Officials, community leaders urge vigilance from Bergen County residents after firebombing of Rutherford synagogue

| January 11, 2012

HACKENSACK — Officials and community leaders in Bergen County are calling for a "higher level of awareness" from area residents after a series of bias crimes on Jewish temples, including the firebombing of a synagogue Wednesday.

"I don't think that this is the type of offense that we should just have a higher level of awareness in the Jewish community," Bergen County Prosecutor John Molinelli said Wednesday of the incident, in which Rabbi Nosson Schuman and his family were attacked with Molotov cocktails as they slept. "I think this is so substantial that I would be reluctant to limit it to that."

"I want the people of Bergen County, I want the 950,000 people that are going to read the paper tomorrow, or watch the shows and listen to the radio to all be aware of this, and have a heightened level of awareness," Mollinelli said. "This is occurring in our neighborhoods."

Wednesday's attack was the fourth incident in the span of just over a month where a Bergen County synagogue was the target of vandalism or arson. Synagogues in Maywood and Hackensack were vandalized in December, and a temple in Paramus was the victim of a fire police determined to be set with an accelerant.

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Category: Synagogue/Jewish Security

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