STOCKTON (CNN/KRON)—A candidate for the Stockton Unified School Board is fighting back against hateful words spray-painted on the sidewalk in front of his home.
Doug Vigil found the words “Quit” and “No Special Ed on board” spray painted on the sidewalk near his home Sunday morning and on signs of his business.
“That day that I found that (the graffiti) I was going to quit,” Vigil said.
He said he is not giving up on the election just like he is not giving up on equality
“I’m trying to advocate to parents that their kids are not broken,” he said. “They can do whatever they want to do and be what they want to be.”
Vigil has done exactly that. He was born without ears, but he has been able to overcome life’s obstacles and ran for the school board to help students similar to him.
“Things like that negativity can turn into a positive and hopefully it will educate and that hatred will not be tolerated in Stockton,” he said.
Friends and people in the community scrubbed away the hateful words.
“I’m proud of you and to me this should give you the strength to keep going, prove how good you are,” one Stockton resident said.
Vigil says another school board member retaliated him. Mayor Anthony Silva even said it was no accident.
“For some young thug to know that he’s running for school board and to know that he happens to have a hearing disability, that’s not a coincidence,” Silva said.
Police are now looking at the graffiti as a possible hate crime.
“We’re encouraging people in that neighborhood to do the right thing and if they saw something, they need to contact the police department immediately because we are taking this case very seriously,” said Joe Silva of the Stockton Police Department.
Police have not made any arrests or identified a suspect.