Video Shows Ontario Middle Schoolers Flashing Nazi Salutes and Shouting ‘Heil Hitler’
Police in North Bay, Ontario, are investigating a potential hate crime after a video emerged of a group of local eighth-grade students flashing Nazi salutes and shouting “Heil Hitler,” among other antisemitic slurs.
The incident occurred last week at École Secondaire Catholique Algonquin, located about three hours north of Toronto.
According to eyewitness accounts, one of the students played the Nazi anthem from an audio device as they marched together on the school’s athletic field.
The video of the incident can be viewed below:
After the video began circulating on social media, police visited the school last Friday.
“I do offer our condolences to the Jewish community of North Bay for having to see this video and see this happening in our community,” said North Bay Police Chief Scott Tod. “It really is, in all the time I’ve been chief of police, I never thought I would have to deal with in our community. The North Bay Police will completely and thoroughly investigate to determine whether a crime related to hate, genocide, or the incitement of hatred has occurred.”
“We take hate and intolerance very serious as a police service,” he added. “Hate crimes require thorough investigation by all the policing resources we have.”
“Some of the parents have been good in determining and seeking the truth of what happened,” Tod noted. “I think that’s important for the police service. We have to understand what has occurred in our community, how did this happen, why did this happen, and how do we stop this from happening in the future.”
A spokesperson for the local school board, Jacqueline Levesque, commented, “We are deeply saddened by the behavior of a group of teenagers who of course needed consequences for their actions. We also recognize that education is key in changing the fabric of society and that these students require education as well. School and board administration are collaborating to ensure student growth and understanding, as any form of oppression, discrimination or antisemitism is not tolerated in our schools.”