Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Following Kansas Killings, de Blasio Says NYPD Taking Steps to Ensure Safety of Jewish Individuals

April 13, 2014 8:53 pm 1 comment

NYPD vehicle. Photo: wiki commons.

Following shootings at Kansas Jewish institutions earlier Sunday that left three dead, New York City’s Mayor Bill de Blasio said the New York Police department was taking steps to ensure the safety of possible Jewish targets.

“The NYPD is taking all steps to ensure the safety and security of Jewish individuals and institutions as Passover is being ushered in,” the mayor said in a statement.

The fatal shootings took place at the Overland Park Jewish Community Center and nearby assisted living center, Village Shalom. A 71 year old suspect carrying multiple firearms has been detained and the FBI is on the scene.

While according to multiple reports the suspect shouted “Heil Hitler” as he was detained, and a chaplain with the Overland Park Police Department said that the shooter specifically targeted Jews, asking his victims about their religion before shooting them, police have said it is too early to say if the murders were motivated by hate.

De Blasio also expressed his sympathies to the families of the victims. “On behalf of New York City, we’d like to offer condolences as well as our thoughts and prayers to the victims of the tragic incident this afternoon in the greater Kansas City area, as well as their families and the entire Jewish community,” he said.

Jewish human rights group, the Anti-Defamation League called the attacks “unspeakable” and “heinous” and called on the public not to draw any conclusions until authorities have released the results of the ongoing investigation.

“The attacks on the Jewish community centers in Overland Park are a cowardly, unspeakable and heinous act of violence,” said Karen Aroesty, ADL St. Louis Regional Director. “While it is too early to label these shootings as a hate crime, the fact that two Jewish institutions were targeted by the same individual just prior to the start of the Passover holiday is deeply troubling and certainly gives us pause. We have reached out to local, state and federal law enforcement and stand willing and able to offer guidance and assistance to the community if this incident turns out to have been motivated by anti-Semitism.”

Last week, the ADL said it sent out a security bulletin to Jewish community institutions across the country warning of the increased potential for violent attacks against community centers in the coming weeks, which coincide both with the Passover holiday and Hitler’s birthday on April 20.

“ADL is not aware of any additional threat to Jewish institutions at this time,” said Ms. Aroesty. “Nevertheless, it is appropriate for Jewish institutions to make sure that all of their security measures are in place and in good working order.”

American Jewish Committee head David Harris said, “Our hearts go out to the victims of this heartbreaking tragedy.”

“As we await more details on the attack and its motive, we join in solidarity with the entire Kansas City area community, both Jewish and non-Jewish, in expressing shock, sadness and dismay,” Harris added. “We can’t help but note that this attack comes on the eve of Passover, a celebration of Jewish freedom from oppression and violence.”

The leadership of B’nai B’rith International also expressed condolences to “the victims, families and entire Jewish community in the Kansas City area.”

The group seemed more willing to peg hatred as the likely motivation behind the attack.

“Unfortunately, this is not the first time there has been a shooting at a Jewish Community Center. Comments attributed to the shooter after police had him in custody demonstrate a blind hatred toward Jews,” B’nai B’rith said.

1 Comment

  • It’s my understanding that our attorney General will not prosecute black hate crimes against whites because in his mind they are justified. I don’t understand his reasoning but evidently he does. Sooooo what happens when black Muslims start killing Jews and Christians. Who was it that said the only Good Jew is a dead Jew? Louis the fairykhan? If he didn’t say it does he think it? He also stated publicly our Mess….ia has arrived. Who from hell was he talking about?

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture First English-Language Trailer Debuts for Natalie Portman’s Hebrew Film ‘A Tale of Love and Darkness,’ Based on Amos Oz’s Memoir (VIDEO)

    First English-Language Trailer Debuts for Natalie Portman’s Hebrew Film ‘A Tale of Love and Darkness,’ Based on Amos Oz’s Memoir (VIDEO)

    The first English-language trailer for Natalie Portman’s directorial debut — A Tale of Love and Darkness — based on Israeli author Amos Oz’s memoir, was released on Thursday. The movie, originally filmed in Hebrew, tells the story of Oz’s childhood in Jerusalem at the end of the British Mandate and the early years of Israel’s independence. Portman, who was born in Israel and speaks fluent Hebrew, plays the lead role of Fania, the author’s mother. She struggles to raise her son as she deals with inner demons, a […]

    Read more →
  • Features As Berlin Prices Rise, Israelis Turn East for German Real-Estate Bargains

    As Berlin Prices Rise, Israelis Turn East for German Real-Estate Bargains

    JNS.org – Sonnenallee, a street in Berlin’s Neukölln district, looks like it comes straight out of an Arab city — so much so that it goes by the nickname “Gaza Strip.” Kebab and bakery shops are advertised in Arabic; men sit in men-only coffee shops; and bridal shop windows showcase glittery, not-so-stylish gowns. But take a random turn, and you’ll find a swath of bars, burger joints, and Indian restaurants where hip Berliners announce that they have arrived to urban coolness. […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Slays in ‘Wonder Woman’ Trailer (VIDEO)

    Israeli Actress Gal Gadot Slays in ‘Wonder Woman’ Trailer (VIDEO)

    Israeli actress Gal Gadot engages in fierce action sequences in the new Wonder Woman trailer, which Warner Bros. premiered during the San Diego Comic-Con on Saturday. The nearly 3-minute trailer, the first to debut for the superhero film, shows scenes of Diana, princess of the Amazons, fighting alongside men in the battle against the world’s toughest enemies. The first shot of the video shows Wonder Woman discovering a man, Steve Trevor (played by actor Chris Pine), washed ashore. The clip then takes viewers to the all-female island where Wonder Woman was born. […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture A Theatrical Look at Diplomacy and the Oslo Accords (REVIEW)

    A Theatrical Look at Diplomacy and the Oslo Accords (REVIEW)

    Is diplomacy worthwhile, even if the end result isn’t what we hoped for? That is the question, among many others, posed by the new play Oslo, by J.T. Rogers. Making its New York debut at Lincoln Center, the play examines the secret diplomatic process that led to the historic 1993 peace accords. The character of Shimon Peres makes an appearance onstage — and he, along with Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat, tower over the proceedings. But they mainly do so in absentia. Instead, […]

    Read more →
  • Spirituality/Tradition Sports Israeli Trailblazer Dean Kremer Brings Jewish Values to Nascent Pro Baseball Career

    Israeli Trailblazer Dean Kremer Brings Jewish Values to Nascent Pro Baseball Career

    JNS.org – Other than being part of the Los Angeles Dodgers organization, Sandy Koufax and Dean Kremer have something else in common: a respect for Jewish tradition. Koufax — who was recently ranked by ESPN as the best left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball (MLB) history — decided not to pitch Game 1 of the 1965 World Series because the game fell on Yom Kippur. “I would do the same,” Kremer said in an interview. Last month, the 20-year-old Kremer became […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Lead Guitarist of British Rock Band Queen Asks Adam Lambert to Sing in Hebrew During Upcoming Israel Concert

    Lead Guitarist of British Rock Band Queen Asks Adam Lambert to Sing in Hebrew During Upcoming Israel Concert

    The famed lead guitarist of British rock band Queen, Brian May, encouraged Jewish singer-songwriter Adam Lambert to perform in Hebrew during their upcoming joint concert in Israel, an entertainment industry advocacy organization reported on Tuesday. During a recent interview with Israeli television personality Assi Azar, May was played a 2005 video of Lambert singing the popular song Shir L’Shalom, (Song for Peace). May was so impressed by Lambert’s singing of the Hebrew track that he told the American singer, “We have to do that. Let’s […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Kenyan Marathoner to Compete for Israel in Rio Olympics

    Kenyan Marathoner to Compete for Israel in Rio Olympics

    JNS.org – Kenyan-born marathoner Lonah Chemtai is expected to compete for Israel at the Olympics Games in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil next month after gaining a last minute approval. “I am very proud [to represent Israel] and I hope to achieve a new personal best time,” Chemtai told Reuters. Chemtai, who grew up a rural village in western Kenya, first came to Israel in 2009 to care of the children of her country’s ambassador to Israel. The 27-year-old runner recently gained […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Jewish Identity Will Laughs Lead to Love on Show About Orthodox Dating?

    Will Laughs Lead to Love on Show About Orthodox Dating?

    To date or not to date? That is not the question for most Modern Orthodox singles in New York. The question is when will they find their future spouses, and when will their families stop nagging them about having babies? Inspired by the success of the Israeli show “Srugim,” Leah Gottfried, 25, decided she would create and star in her own show, “Soon By You.” “Dating is so serious already,” Gottfried said. “We wanted to take a lighter approach and laugh at the […]

    Read more →