Teen released in NoHo synagogue shooting

| October 29, 2009

NORTH HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (KABC) — A gunman opened fire on two men at a North Hollywood synagogue on Thursday, but the motive is a mystery.

Authorities responded to reports of a shooting at Adat Yeshurun Valley Sephardic synagogue on the 12400 block of Sylvan Street at 6:18 a.m. Two men, ages 38 and 53, were shot in the legs in the underground parking garage of the synagogue, just before a morning prayer service.

Deputy Police Chief Michel Moore said the first victim had just gotten out of his car when the suspect tried to shoot him. The suspect's weapon malfunctioned, and as he tried to get the weapon to work, the second victim approached.

The suspect shot both men and fled on foot before police arrived.

Both men were taken to a local hospital in stable condition.

More than an hour after the shooting, a 17-year-old, who matched the rough description of the suspect, was taken into custody. However, after questioning the teen, he was released.

Police are also reviewing surveillance tape from the parking garage, but said the actual shooting is not seen on the tape.

Detectives said no words were exchanged at the time of the shooting, and at this point do not know what the motive may be. Authorities said they are unsure if the shooting was a hate crime, and the FBI has joined the investigation.

L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa said it's simply too soon to jump to conclusions, but in the meantime, all Jewish schools and synagogues have been placed on high alert.

Officials said Adat Yeshurun is an Orthodox synagogue of Moroccan descent, and a hub for the Jewish community.



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Category: Synagogue/Jewish Security

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