Mass shooting in Jersey City shifts focus for mayor, NYPDPosted: Updated:
Over the last few years, there have been mounting reports of disturbing anti-Semitic incidents around the city. Now the city is working on ways to deal with the communities left reeling in the Jersey City shooting aftermath.
There have been numerous swastikas, hateful slurs and vicious assaults that leave a sinister reminder that hate is still alive.
Fighting back tears, Rabbi David Niederman spoke on behalf of many in the city's Jewish community. He thanked the mayors of New York City and Jersey City, as well as the police departments.
He also thanked them for their help to prevent Tuesday's mass shooting from getting worse.
"Who knows, God forbid, how many lives of children would have been killed if not for that massive, massive presence over there," said Rabbi Niederman.
It's a tragedy that has become all too familiar not just in our area-- but around the country as well. Eleven people died from a mass shooting at the Tree Of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh last year, and this spring a shooting at the Chabad Of Poway in California left one dead and three others injured.
"This confirms a sad truth. There is a crisis of anti-Semitism in this nation. It has continued to take on a more and more violent form all over this country," said Mayor Bill de Blasio.
So what's being done? Earlier this year, de Blasio's administration opened the Office for the Prevention of Hate Crimes. On Wednesday, the mayor announced that the NYPD has been working on a new unit dubbed REME - short for Racially and Ethnically Motivated Extremism. "The unit is focused on identifying any form of racial or ethnic extremism so we can act on it before it occurs," said de Blasio.
New Jersey officials identified the shooters as 47-year-old David Anderson and 50-year-old Francine Graham. Investigators are still working to determine the motive.