Sacto 9-1-1
February 2, 2010
Rewards offered in hate-crime incidents at synagogues

Snapshot-9.jpgBy Hudson Sangree

Law enforcement and religious leaders announced Monday that they are offering rewards for information leading to the arrests of suspects in two recent hate-crime incidents.

The first (video above and right photo) was Nov. 10 at Congregation Beth Shalom, 4746 El Camino Ave., Carmichael. A vandal spray-painted a hate message and swastikas, and tried to burn a sign at the synagogue, federal authorities said.

The second incident occurred Jan. 1 at Kenesset Israel Torah Center, 1165 Morse Ave., Sacramento. Satanic messages, racial epithets, and swastikas were spray-painted at the center. Beth Shalom and Kenesset Israel were targeted by arsonists in 1999.

Benjamin Matthew Williams, a self-proclaimed white supremacist, and his brother, James Tyler Williams, pleaded guilty in September 2001 to setting fires at three area synagogues, causing $3 million in damage.

Monday at Kenesset Israel, Drew Parenti, the special agent in charge of the FBI in Sacramento, announced the bureau is offering a reward of up to $2,500 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the two latest incidents.

Skip Rosenbloom, president of the of the Jewish Federation of the Sacramento Region, said the group has established a $1,500 reward to arrest and convict those who commit criminal acts against area religious institutions.

Anyone with information is asked to call the FBI at (916) 481-9110.

Previous coverage:

Area churches grapple with crime - Jan. 25, 2010

Kenesset Israel synagogue in Sacramento struck by vandals - Jan. 2, 2010

Carmichael synagogue defaced by Nazi symbols - Nov. 11, 2009

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