Chicago synagogue vandalized in suspected hate crime


(JTA) — A downtown Chicago synagogue was vandalized in what police believe is a hate crime.

The front window of the nearly 90-year-old Chicago Loop Synagogue was smashed early Saturday morning and copies of swastikas were taped to its front doors.

Police were called to the synagogue at 12:30 a.m. Saturday after witnesses saw the attack in progress, according to reports.

The vandal was caught on surveillance camera, which was released to the public later Saturday. He is white and wearing dark clothing and a dark mask. The man is seen getting out of a dark-colored SUV and sticking the swastikas on the synagogue’s front door before smashing the plate glass window with a metal object.

Police told local media they are investigating the incident as a hate crime.

“The Chicago Jewish community will not be intimidated by anti-Semitic attacks on a house of worship,” the American Jewish Committee’s Chicago director, Amy Stoken, said in a statement. “The right of all religious groups to practice their faith without fear is a fundamental American value. Chicagoans must speak together clearly that the hatred behind this destructive behavior will never be accepted.”

Sabbath services went ahead as scheduled Saturday morning.

Recommended from JTA