Graffiti on Brooklyn synagogues leads to hate crime charge

National News

FILE – In this Friday, Oct. 11, 2019 file photo, candles reflect in an entrance sign after a human chain with lights was formed around the Jewish synagogue during the Sabbath celebrations in Halle (Saale), Germany, following an attack on the synagogue on Yom Kippur 2019. (AP Photo/Jens Meyer, file)

NEW YORK (AP) – Police say a 39-year-old man has been charged with burglary and criminal mischief as a hate crime after derogatory graffiti was found on four Brooklyn synagogues.

Emil Benjamin of Brooklyn was accused Thursday of scrawling graffiti with a marker pen, damaging two cabinets and stealing $20 from one synagogue.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has directed the state police Hate Crimes Task Force to assist the New York Police Department in the investigation.

“I was disgusted to my core to learn of the anti-Semitic acts of vandalism that occurred in Brooklyn over the weekend,” Gov. Cuomo said. “Let us remember, hate, in any of its forms, will not be tolerated in New York and we will always stand united against the cowards who seek to sow division and attack people for who they are or what they believe.”

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