North Miami - NMB

Police searching for man who vandalized North Miami Beach synagogue

North Miami Beach police are searching for a man who damaged the entrance to a North Miami Beach synagogue earlier this week.

The suspect rode up on a bicycle to the Sephardic Jewish Center, 17100 NE Sixth Ave., and threw several rocks at the front door of the synagogue, according to police surveillance video.

The door was shattered, but the man didn’t enter the building, and his motive remains unclear.

The Wednesday incident adds to a number of unsettling events in the South Florida Orthodox Jewish community in recent years with one of the most severe being the murder of Rabbi Joseph Raksin, who was visiting from Brooklyn in 2014 and was shot dead during a robbery.

The teenager accused of killing Raksin, 15-year-old Deandre Charles, was granted bail and house arrest by a judge this week.

Several synagogues and cars were also vandalized with hate speech in 2014, and the Anti Defamation League called it a “particularly violent year for Jews.” Last November, the Greater Miami Jewish Federation held a rally in Miami Beach in an effort to bring attention to the incidents.

NMB police are asking anyone with information to contact Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-8477.

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