View Full Version : Jewish leaders demand probe headstones toppled by 'acts of God', nature and 'disrepair'

The Bobster
03-06-2017, 08:10 AM

Jewish leaders demand probe into toppled headstones
By Reuven Fenton, Daniel Prendergast and Max Jaeger
March 5, 2017 | 9:47pm


The cops are ready to close the books on this one — but nobody’s :rolleyes: buying it.

Nearly four dozen headstones were found toppled at a Jewish cemetery in Brooklyn over the weekend, leading cops to initially suspect a hate crime — then defer to cemetery officials who dismissed foul play, saying the aging headstones fell long ago from disrepair.

But local Jewish leaders are demanding further investigation.

The incident comes amid a slew of anti-Semitic hate crimes in the city and across the nation, including cemetery desecrations.

“The people who first reported this to us were individuals who walk by … on the way to synagogue on Shabbos, and they were the ones who saw something that looked wrong to them,’’ state Assemblyman Dov Hikind (Beanie-Brooklyn) said Sunday.

“If they had seen the [toppled stones] before,’’ they would have reported it, he said. :rolleyes:

“We’re not talking about stones that are down, that they want to repair. We’re talking about tombstones where if you look at it, you say, ‘Someone vandalized it.’”

Passers-by reported the 42 damaged tombstones at the Washington Cemetery at 5400 Bay Parkway around 6 p.m. Saturday, police said.

The headstones were randomly scattered in a section of cemetery larger than a football field, and many were more than a century old.

Cops with the NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force, along with cemetery officials, took a closer look at the property Sunday, as NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill called the incident “a great concern.

The cemetery workers’ verdict — that the stones had already been down — closed the case within a couple hours.

“The older sections, as the stones wear, they do fall over or [become] unstable, and what we do is move them across the grave to keep them memorialized, rather than take them away,” said cemetery General Manager Marisa Tarantino.

But Hikind — joined by city Comptroller Scott Stringer and Councilman David Greenfield (Kyke–Brooklyn) in the call for a closer look — noted that police discovered a roughly 3-foot hole cut into a razor-wire fence near the section of damaged cemetery.

“The breach is so obvious that someone cut this razor wire for a poipose,” Hikind kvetched.