Local Jewish Community leaders comment on synagogue terrorist attack

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By Brandon Jarvis

11 people were tragically murdered and 6 more injured while they were at a synagogue, that is surrounded by a close-knit and vibrant Jewish community.

The Jewish Community Federation of Richmond said something like this should never happen.

“The Jewish Community Federation of Richmond expresses its horror and heartfelt sadness over the mass shooting that took place during Shabbat services this morning at Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. Words cannot express the sense of loss we feel for the Pittsburgh community, and even more so for the friends and family of the congregants and first responders who were injured or killed in this terrible incident.

Jeff Finkelstein, the president and chief executive of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, said of the incident, “this should not be happening, period. It should not be happening in the synagogue, it should not be happening in our neighborhood in Squirrel Hill.” Indeed, this should not happen anywhere, and we must remain vigilant and engaged in order to stem the terrible tide of anti-Semitism that has been growing in recent years. Since 2017, anti-Semitic incidents have increased dramatically. But for now we hang our heads in sorrow for our brothers and sisters and the brave law enforcement public servants taken from our midst by this heinous act.

We are monitoring the situation and are in contact with local law enforcement and will keep you updated as information becomes available.”

The F.B.I. has opened a federal hate crime investigation against the suspect in a shooting that caused multiple casualties at a jewish synagogue in Pittsburgh Saturday morning. The Washington Post has reported that the shooting caused 11 casualties leaving 6 more injured.

Multiple outlets are reporting that at least 4 police officers were injured in the tragedy. Investigators that were briefing the press could barely speak through the tears when describing a “horrific” crime scene.

President Trump told reporters before boarding Air Force 1 that this wouldn’t have happened if the Synagogue had an armed guard inside.

Tim Kaine, the Democratic candidate for Senate in Virginia called for love and unity. “My heart breaks for all impacted by the horrific act of evil in Pittsburgh. We must counter vicious anti-Semitism with love and unity. To the Tree of Life Synagogue and Squirrel Hill community, we stand with you.”

The Republican candidate for Senate Corey Stewart offered his prayer. “I’m just learning of today’s abhorrent shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. My prayers are with all the victims, their families, and first responders on the scene.”

Pittsburgh’s Director of Public Safety says multiple people are dead and six injured – including 4 police officers – after a man opened fire at the Tree of Life Synagogue around 9:45 this morning.

Local sources in Pittsburgh forKDKA-TV  identified the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting suspect as Robert Bowers.

Bowers has been described as a white male, heavy set, with a beard. He surrendered to police after opening fire on police officers. Police say he was injured and crawling when he was taken into custody. He was transported to Mercy Hospital, said Curt Conrad, chief of staff for City Councilman Corey O’Connor.

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