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N.Y. yeshiva student admits to writing anti-Semitic graffiti

NEW YORK  (JTA) — A Long Island yeshiva student was charged with repeatedly scrawling anti-Semitic graffiti inside a commuter train station.

Jonathan Schuster, 18, a senior at Priority-1: Torah Academy of Lawrence-Cedarhurst in Cedarhurst, N.Y.,was charged with the crimes on Thursday.

He admitted to using black marker to write anti-Semitic statements, often including expletives, on eight occasions since December 2012, police told Newsday.

Schuster, who lives in the Far Rockaway section of Queens, has no criminal record.

The vandalism, at the Cedarhurst station of the Long Island Rail Road, mostly occurred at night, with the graffiti consisting of obscenities directed at Orthodox Jews scrawled on train platform billboards or station signs. On one occasion, a swastika was etched into the wall of a platform shelter.

Priority-1: Torah Academy of Lawrence-Cedarhurst bills itself as “the pioneering leader in alternative yeshiva high schooling to service capable and gifted young men whose needs are not being met by the traditional yeshiva system.”

The school “has led countless at-risk teenage boys to abandon self-destructive behavior and become true bnei Torah and observant Jews,” the yeshiva’s website says.

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