Go to the Globe and Mail homepage

Jump to main navigationJump to main content

AdChoices
Signs are displayed outside the Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery on Feb. 22, 2017, in University City, Miss. (Michael Thomas/Getty Images)
Signs are displayed outside the Chesed Shel Emeth Cemetery on Feb. 22, 2017, in University City, Miss. (Michael Thomas/Getty Images)

Jewish community centres in Canada, U.S. hit with new bomb threats Add to ...

The Anti-Defamation League and several Jewish community centres across the trhe U.S and Canada got a new round of bomb threats Tuesday, adding to the scores they have been plagued with since January.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio was at a Jewish Community Center on Staten Island to denounce previous threats when he learned of the new ones.

“This is a moment in time, in history, where forces of hate have been unleashed,” de Blasio said. “It is exceedingly unsettling.”

Federal officials have been investigating more than 120 threats against Jewish organizations in three dozen states since Jan. 9 and a rash of vandalism at Jewish cemeteries. Over the course of Monday evening and Tuesday, there were eight emailed or phoned-in bomb threats in six states plus Ontario, the JCC Association of North America said.

In Canada, Jewish community centres in Toronto and London, Ont., received bomb threats on Tuesday.

Police say the Miles Nadal Jewish Community Centre in Toronto was evacuated out of “an abundance of caution” in light of threats made in New York, Oregon, Wisconsin, Illinois, Florida, Maryland.

The Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs says a bomb threat made against the London Jewish Community Centre was the second it has received in the past two months. Both facilities reopened after police provided the all clear.

Toronto police Supt. Neil Corrigan says a major intersection was shut down while police investigated the threat and a school was locked down.

Toronto Mayor John Tory visited the Jewish community centre targeted by the threat, calling the incident “very traumatizing.”

Also Tuesday, two suburban Jewish community centres in upstate New York were shut down when someone phoned in bomb threats, authorities said. The Jewish Community Center in the Milwaukee suburb of Whitefish Bay was closed for almost two hours. A Jewish community centre in Portland, Oregon, received a bomb threat, too.

In Providence, Rhode Island, an administrator at the Jewish Community Day School, attached to a synagogue, received a threat Tuesday morning alleging there was a shooter with an assault rifle on the roof of the building, police said. Police and a K-9 team swept the building; no one was found.

Chicago Jewish Day School on the city’s north side was evacuated for a few hours.

In New York, Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said there were five threats made, including to the New York-based Anti-Defamation League, which also received threats to its offices in Atlanta, Boston and Washington, D.C. The ADL said threats were also made in Florida and Maryland.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said he shared President Donald Trump’s hope that the threats subside.

“We denounce these latest anti-Semitic and hateful threats in the strongest terms. It is incredibly saddening that I have to continue to share these disturbing reports with you,” he said. “As long as they do continue, we will continue to condemn them and look at ways in which we can stop them.”

On Friday, Missouri resident Juan Thompson was arrested on a cyberstalking charge and accused of making at least eight of the threats nationwide, including one to the ADL. Authorities said Thompson was trying to harass and frame his ex-girlfriend by pinning the threats on her.

A criminal complaint said Thompson started making threats Jan. 28. He claimed on Twitter that his ex-girlfriend was behind the calls. Thompson is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday in St. Louis for a hearing to determine if he should remain detained pending trial.

Authorities are looking for other suspects in the threats.

Report Typo/Error

Next story

loading

Trending

loading

Most popular videos »

More from The Globe and Mail

Most popular