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Cleveland-area synagogues hit with anti-Semitic voicemails

Local police label incidents as ‘ethnic intimidation’ and a ‘harassing communication’; unclear if linked

Heights Jewish Center in University Heights, Ohio. (Google Street View)
Heights Jewish Center in University Heights, Ohio. (Google Street View)

Two Cleveland-area synagogues received anti-Semitic hate messages on their voicemail systems.

Two messages described as “disturbing and anti-Semitic” were left on the voicemail system of Heights Jewish Center, an Orthodox synagogue in University Heights, Ohio, on Saturday. The synagogue’s offices are closed on Shabbat, though the synagogue is full of worshipers on that day.

“The appropriate authorities and community partners have been made aware of what happened. Proper follow-up steps are being pursued,” the synagogue’s rabbi, Raphael Davidovich, and president, Rob Altshuler, said in a statement.

Local police have labeled the incident as “ethnic intimidation” and a “harassing communication.”

A day earlier, a similar message was left on the voicemail of Temple Israel Ner Tamid, a Conservative synagogue in Mayfield Heights.

Police reportedly have not determined if the two incidents are related, according to Channel 19 News in Cleveland.

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