Vandal spray paints Temple Israel during Passover

| March 29, 2013

MINNEAPOLIS (KMSP) – Minneapolis police are looking for a vandal who was caught on camera spray-painting purple letters on Temple Israel overnight, and though they're not sure what it means, they say it could be a hate crime.

Police are not releasing the video, describing it as evidence — but Rabbi Marcia Zimmerman told FOX 9 News that the man seen on video footage acted alone in spraying graffiti on the exterior of Minnesota's largest synagogue, where Judaism is practiced, studied and where the public is invited for community events.

Given that it is Passover, some members of the Jewish community are wondering if this wasn't just an act of vandalism, but also an act of hate. Police say they're investigating that, too.

"It's still upsetting and insulting," Zimmerman said as she showed the damage on the pillars and walls of Temple Israel. "It's unclear what it all means."

The purple graffiti is unintelligible, which — on the surface — suggests that the vandals purpose was that of a simple scoundrel, but the timing of the act may speak volumes.

"We saw that it was a single person sometime before midnight Tuesday," Zimmerman said.

Zimmerman explained that 200 worshippers had just left after the second night and the second seder, and the holiday made the vandalism tighter to take.

Read more: Vandal spray paints Temple Israel during Passover – KMSP-TV

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Category: Synagogue/Jewish Security

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