US: 1st suspect arrested in connection to bomb threats on 8 Jewish centers

Juan Thompson was arrested on the suspicion of calling in bomb threats to the Anti-Defamation League offices and 8 Jewish centers throughout the US. The suspect stated that he is “eager for a Jewish Newtown,” likely said in reference to the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Connecticut.

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31-year-old Juan Thompson was arrested in Missouri as he is suspected of being responsible for calling in bomb threats to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) offices and 8 Jewish Community Centers (JCCs) and Jewish schools throughout the US. The bomb threat against the ADL was received on February 22 but it was determined that the threat was unreliable and the offices were not evacuated. However, the JCCs and Jewish schools did evacuate their staff and students.

In one of the incidents, Thompson called a Jewish school in Michigan and claimed that he had planted two bombs on their campus. He added that he was “eager for a Jewish Newtown,” likely stated in reference to the 2012 massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, where six school employees and 20 students were shot dead.

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FBI agents arrested Thompson and investigators are trying to establish his role in further threats made towards dozens of Jewish centers since January. Thompson will be brought before a judge for a hearing in Manhattan, where the ADL offices are located.

As reported by JOL, over 100 bomb threats have been called in to Jewish centers across the US since January. As a result, local authorities had to evacuate students and staff from their classrooms. Furthermore, three Jewish cemeteries were vandalized within the past two weeks in Philadelphia, Rochester, and Union City, Missouri. However, the local authorities emphasized that it is too early to determine whether this was outright anti-Semitism or simply vandalism.

Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News


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