amyjudd, thanks for getting this story out so quickly. It will now show up on the home page for four hours. If new developments justify it, I'll renew this flag for another cycle.
Los Angeles Synagogue Shooting: Two Men Wounded in "Hate Crime"
In Los Angeles today two men in their 30s have been shot in their legs outside Adat Yeshurun Valley Sephardic Synagogue in the 12000 block of Sylvan Street, a North Hollywood synagogue, and police are investigating to determine if it is a hate crime. The shooting took place in the parking area of the synagogue.
A man with a gun entered the synagogue at 6:19am and shot two people. They are in stable condition. A man is in custody. Police say that the victims were Jewish and a suspect in custody is black. The suspect in custody is about 17-years-old and does match a description given by witnesses, but police are still searching the area. They are not certain that this man is the suspect involved in the shooting.
They have not recovered the hand gun involved.The gunman didn't say anything when he entered the synagogue according to police, and witnesses said he looked angry. The gun jammed at first when he fired and then he fixed it and fired again.
L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa called the incident "a senseless act of violence." The mayor was careful to temper worries that the shooting was a hate crime.
"None of us should presume or speculate more about this other than it was a random act of violence."]
Jewish schools and other synagogues in the area have been advised of what happened and police have asked them to activate their security systems.
Police are working with the FBI to solve what happened in North Hollywood this morning.
Michael Bloom, 30, an Orthodox organizer with Hatzolah, a Jewish volunteer medical response team, grew up in the diverse neighborhood. He said there had been instances of Jews being insulted as they walked to the synagogue on the Sabbath.
"This has been going on for years. Everything from "death to Israel" to "dirty Jew,'" he said. "There are gangs in the area. It's not the safest neighborhood."
However, Sholomo Yaghobi, 18, said the neighborhood was "calm, relatively."
More information when it becomes available.
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