A killing spree took place in Jersey City on Tuesday, Dec. 10th, that ended with the death of six people, one of whom was a highly-respected Jersey City policeman.
The Black Hebrew Israelite Group
A man and a woman, who’ve since been identified as Francine Graham and David Anderson, walked into the JC Kosher Supermarket and immediately executed the three people inside. This lead to a 4-hour standoff with local police, SWAT units, FBI and officers from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Law enforcement officials said that surveillance footage shows the pair planned this attack. They are seen on video calmly exiting a van with two rifles before heading into the kosher supermarket.
Mayor Steve Fulop gave a press conference Wednesday morning and said:
“At the time yesterday, it was difficult to understand and there are still a lot of questions. We do feel comfortable saying this is a targeted attack on the Jewish kosher deli.”
It’s now believed that Graham and Anderson belonged to the Black Hebrew Israelite group, which is known for their extreme hatred towards Jewish people, as well as being anti-police and anti-government.
Outside the Supermarket, police also discovered a stolen U-Haul that contained religious writings and a pipe bomb. The local bomb squad was able to safely detonate the device. Police are still investigating exactly what the shooters planned on doing with it.
So far, two of the three victims inside the supermarket have been identified as Moshe Deutsch and Mindel Ferencz. The officer who was shot and killed was Detective Joseph Seals. Seals was a husband and father of 5 who started working for the department 13 years ago.
This event has left the local community devastated. Gov. Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio, both officials from neighboring New York, have already come out and said that the killings were premeditated and an obvious anti-Semitic attack.
Mayor de Blasio made a statement on Monday that said:
“It was an act of terror. It was violent. It was directed. There is still a lot we need to know … but it is enough to tell us that this was an act of hate and an act of terror.”
He also announced that the New York City executive director for the prevention of hate crimes will be working to ensure the safety of the Jewish community.
The Orthodox advocacy group Agudath Israel of America issued a statement as well:
“We must recognize the greater context in which this outrage occurred. Jews have been targeted in city streets, in their houses of worship and online. The increase in the number of anti-Semitic incidents is alarming and needs to be urgently addressed. We pray that the plans of all who would do our people harm be frustrated, and that all Americans be spared any future such senseless violence.”
Police have increased patrols at synagogues in both New York City and New Jersey as a precaution.
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