New York

New York, New Jersey Jewish Community Centers Evacuated Amid Reports of Bomb Threats

This is at least the fifth wave of threats this year against the centers

What to Know

  • At least six Jewish Community Centers in New Jersey, NYC, Long Island and Westchester County got bomb threats Monday
  • They were part of a nationwide wave of threats against JCCs
  • There have been at least five such waves of bomb threats since the start of this year

At least seven Jewish Community Centers in the tri-state region were evacuated Monday after the latest in a round of anti-Semitic bomb threats, authorities said.

As a result, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Monday he had ordered an investigation into the bomb threats across New York State.

"In response to these anti-Semitic attacks, I am ordering the State Police to work with our federal and local law enforcement partners to investigate these threats and apprehend those responsible."

The Jewish Community Centers Association told NBC News at least 16 facilities nationwide received threats. Facilities in Pennsylvania and Delaware, Indiana, Alabama, Missouri, North Carolina and Florida reported calls. 

The NYPD said they were doing a sweep of all three Jewish Community Centers on Staten Island after a person phoned in just before 10 a.m. and said an explosive was going to go off. 

The Cherry Hill Jewish Community Center in Camden County, New Jersey was safely evacuated before 11 a.m., and police were at the scene, the center tweeted.

Nassau County police confirmed just before noon that the JCC in Plainview had been evacuated, and authorities said the Tarrytown and Scarsdale facilities in Westchester County had received threats as well. While there have been no threats in Suffolk, police there say they've enhanced patrols at synagogues, Jewish cemeteries and religious institutions out of an abundance of precaution. 

Almost all of those facilities were cleared and reopened to students and staff within a couple of hours of the initial threats.


A map compiled by the online edition of the Israeli newspaper Haaretz of the Feb. 27 threats.

The threat comes amid a rash of bomb threats targeting Jewish Community Centers across the country

Some 16 centers, including one in New Jersey, were threatened in nine states on Jan. 9, according to Marla Cohen, communications manager for the New-York based, JCC Association of North America. 

Nine days later, Cohen said, 28 centers in 17 states were threatened. She said some of the threats came in as robo-dialers and some were actual people. The FBI was assisting in the probe. 

Just last Monday, another 10 were evacuated.

Oren Segal, the director of the Anti-Defamation League's Center on Extremism, said on Twitter Monday that there have now been five such waves of threats in the last two months. 

President Trump, after days of pressure to address the threats more aggressively, last week called them "horrible and painful."

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