The Jewish Community Center in Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin, was forced to evacuate after the fourth terrorist threat in six weeks was sent out via email over the weekend. The center reopened a few hours after police had made sure the area was secure, both inside and outside.
According to FOX6Now, investigators raided the facility to ensure no bombs were present, while law enforcement officials remained parked at every entrance. A statement was given by Whitefish Bay Jewish Community Center official Jay Hodin, who called the repeated threats a “major inconvenience” to those who frequent the facility, going on to say that synagogue-goers often feel these types of threats are false alarms. While Hodin admits that such scares are often nothing to be worried about, he makes his view clear that they must be taken seriously all the same.
The center’s official Twitter account, Harry & Rose Samson Family Jewish Community Center, posted a status immediately after the facility’s closure informing their members of the situation. They apologized for any inconvenience suffered due to the evacuation, and assured their followers they would be the first to know when the center had been reopened.
KHOU reports that Hodin, as well as other members of the Whitefish Bay Jewish Community Center, were quick to praise the efforts by law enforcement officials when it came to dealing with the emailed bomb threat. The officers who arrived at the scene, they say, did everything possible to ensure that the facility was indeed protected and those in and around it were safe.
Scott Walker, Governor of Wisconsin, released a statement detailing his plans to add additional security and staffing to the Whitefish Bay Jewish Community Center in light of these recent threats. As of right now, no suspects are being looked into and intelligence services have yet to discover a motive.
However, attacks on JCC’s are being threatened more and more frequently as of late. The Indianapolis Star reveals that a total of six Jewish facilities across the United States received bomb threats on Sunday, March 12. In Houston. Texas, this marks the second terrorist scare in under a month to be reported. Canine units were brought in to search the facilities, but no explosive devices were discovered. The bomb threats have even reached out of the U.S., with various media outlets giving detail to a threat posed at a synagogue in Vancouver, Canada, one which also turned out to be false.
By Lorelai Zelmerlow
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