Police are asking for the public's help to identify a person who was caught on surveillance video Sunday afternoon in East Palo Alto vandalizing a memorial dedicated to the firefighters who died during the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.
The memorial, which was set up outside the Menlo Park Fire Protection District's Fire Station 2 at 2290 University Ave., was vandalized on the 15th anniversary of the attacks, according to fire officials.
Firefighters returning from an emergency call discovered the memorial – 343 small flags representing each firefighter who died in the line of duty on Sept. 11 – had been set on fire.
After reviewing surveillance video from the area, a person was spotted setting fire to the flags, around 1:40 p.m., according to police.
After starting the fire, the suspect walked away, heading toward Runnymede Street, police said.
The flags were being held in a flag tray, which was built and paid or by the firefighters themselves. The memorial had been a tradition within the fire district since the first anniversary of the terrorist attacks in New York, Washington D.C. and Pennsylvania.
The surveillance video can be seen here.
Anyone with information about the identity of the suspect is urged to contact East Palo Alto police at (650) 409-6792 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tips can also be texted to (650) 409-6792. Tipsters have the option of remaining anonymous.