Police search for vandals who desecrated rainbow crosswalk in New Zealand, incident to be treated as 'hate crime'

Authorities in Auckland, New Zealand, are looking for three people who painted over the rainbow crosswalk on Karangahape Road early Thursday Morning.

In the CCTV footage posted on X, white paint was splashed across the crosswalk, as two of the men rollers to spread it around while another appears to film the act.

According to the NZ Herald, police executed a search warrant in connection to the incident on Thursday, and are treating the act as a "hate crime." Auckland City Central area commander Inspector Grant Tetzlaf revealed, "Police attended an address in Flat Bush, which was believed to be linked to the owners of the registered vehicle.”

“We are calling on those responsible for this incident to come forward and speak with us," he added. "Police have no tolerance for reports of this nature, which appear to directly target a particular sector of our diverse community, and we are treating this as a hate crime."

The incident took place around 3:20 am on Thursday, and police said the suspects covered their faces and removed the license plates from the vehicle they were driving. They have since been unable to locate the vehicle.

Tetzlaff described it as "a distinctive, high gloss grey or white colour, with black roof racks and mag wheels."

In reaction to the vandalism, Auckland Mayor Wayne Brown told the outlet that the incident was "disgraceful." He added, "I've got no time for intolerance of people's differences."

The city transport infrastructure project manager, Mark Banfield said, "This appalling act of vandalism happened at about 3:20 am and we have done our best to minimize the damage." He noted, "The crossing is an important part of the street that celebrates the rainbow community and we will be seeing what can be done to remediate it as soon as possible.”

Image: Title: Rainbow Crosswalk