- The Washington Times - Friday, October 27, 2006

Federal and Arlington County authorities are searching for a drifter they believe has been drawing swastikas and other graffiti in the area around Arlington National Cemetery.

Police say that Ronald Bost, 47, of no fixed address, is responsible for a rash of vandalism near Arlington Memorial Bridge and Memorial Drive.

One July incident on a construction site at the Memorial Avenue Rehabilitation Project cost $1,000 to clean.

U.S. Park Police Detective Kevin Fornshill said that Bost is the “chief suspect” in the case, based largely on the fact that Bost has been arrested four times by park police on vandalism charges since the mid-1990s.

“He’s out again and he’s doing it again,” Detective Fornshill said.

In 2004, Bost was arrested for painting swastikas and anti-Semitic obscenities over signs near the Netherlands Carillon at Arlington Cemetery.

His vandalism has been identified around the George Washington Parkway, as far south as Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and as far north as the Francis Scott Key Bridge.

“The first documented cases we have that are linked to this guy go back to 1997,” Detective Fornshill said.

The latest vandalism includes nine cases in which anti-Semitic and anti-Muslim statements and obscene drawings have appeared on construction equipment and road signs in the District and near Arlington National Cemetery and the Iwo Jima Memorial.

Arlington police say they are investigating with the U.S. Park Police because they suspect Bost is connected to at least six recent cases of vandalism in the Rosslyn area.

“We do have a number of cases dating back to 2004 that we think he’s responsible for,” said John Lisle, a spokesman for Arlington police.

He said the graffiti includes swastikas drawn on signs along a bike path and on newspaper boxes that distribute The Washington Post.

Bost has an extensive arrest record in Virginia, Maryland and the District, mostly for disorderly conduct but also for battery, and he has a felony assault conviction.

Detective Fornshill said that Bost also has been arrested for shouting anti-Semitic statements in Pershing Park in Northwest and outside the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.

U.S. marshals have an arrest warrant for Bost for a parole violation.

Police say Bost is 6-feet-2, weighs 200 pounds and has several tattoos on his arms and hands. Anyone who sees Bost is asked to contact police immediately.

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