Michael Setiawan, 36, who left the force in 2007 after two years of service, was accused Sunday of spraying swastikas and hate-filled words on the walls of a Jewish school, three other buildings and 15 cars in Borough Park.
Surveillance cameras filmed a bald man believed to be Setiawan wielding a spray-paint can during Saturday night’s vandalism rampage that left residents terrified.
“Hate is not a Brooklyn value, and I repudiate any lowlife individual who would spread their prejudiced invective,” said Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, a former NYPD officer.
Setiawan was charged with 19 counts each of criminal mischief as a hate crime and aggravated harassment as a hate crime. His arraignment was pending.
He was accused of scrawling the words “F— you Jew” and “Jew cheap s—” on the walls of the Bnos Zion Bobov School on 14th Ave. and on buildings and cars along Dahill Road, 37th St. and 14th Ave. near 38th St.
Setiawan was arrested Sunday after detectives reviewing video surveillance saw the vandal getting out of a car registered to the former cop, a police source said. “Something happened to this guy. He’s not well,” the source said.
During his time on the force Setiawan had been assigned to the 69th Precinct in Canarsie.
He left the department in 2007 because he was suffering from depression, the source said.
Setiawan’s younger brother Erik, a traffic cop, committed suicide in July 2011, cops said. Officers found him in the front seat of a parked car on Quince Ave. in Flushing, Queens, after an overdose of prescription drugs.
A resident on 86th Road, near the Setiawan family home in Bellerose, Queens, described Michael Setiawan as mentally ill, possibly with bipolar disorder. “He’s got problems,” the neighbor said. “But he’s a good guy. Quiet. Helpful.”
Several Borough Park residents said they were relieved a swift arrest was made, but they were shocked the accused is a former police officer.
Jewish community leaders praised investigators for the quick apprehension and warned that bigotry won’t be tolerated. “We have many Holocaust survivors here, many elderly people and children who are appropriately frightened by unprovoked hate attacks upon their schools and community,” said Assemblyman Dov Hikind (D-Borough Park). “Hate attacks on our community will not go unpunished.”
Anti-Jewish graffiti was also found in a second Brooklyn neighborhood over the weekend. Councilman Chaim Deutsch released pictures of a swastika and black-colored scrawl that read “F— Jews” that was painted on a block in Manhattan Beach.
Deutsch said cops told him they don’t believe the graffiti was the work of Setiawan.