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Indianapolis Jewish Community Center bomb threat one of 11 across the US Monday

Latest sweep of threats made across the country
Posted at 11:12 AM, Feb 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-27 18:11:33-05

INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indianapolis Jewish Community Center was one of more than a dozen centers and schools across the country that received bomb threats on Monday. 

The JCC Association of North America said it is outraged by this fifth wave of bomb threats in recent weeks. David Poser, director of strategic performance at the JCC Association, released this statement: 

"Anti-semitism of this nature should not and must not be allowed to endure in our communities. The Justice Department, Homeland Security, the FBI, and the White House, alongside Congress and local officials, must speak out- and speak out forcefully - against this scourge of anti-Semitism impacting communities across the country. Actions speak louder than words. Members of our community must see swift and concerted action from federal officials to identify and capture the perpetrators or perpetrators who are trying to instill anxiety and fear in our communities."

Monday's threat was the first this year against the Indianapolis Jewish Community Center, which is on the city's north side. 

An officer with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department said the threat was called in at 10:17 a.m. by somebody with a masked voice. After receiving the threat, the staff evacuated the main JCC building. There were 165 children, 25 staff and 10 support employees inside at the time.

A K-9 officer with a bomb-sniffing dog searched the school. The all-clear was given at around 11:20 a.m. People started re-entering the building around that time.

There were 21 incidents of bomb threats called into 13 JCCs and eight Jewish day schools in Alabama, Delaware, Florida, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Virginia on Monday.

Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett said he was appalled to hear of the threat:

"While I am thankful that no one was injured, I stand with our Jewish brothers and sisters to disavow and condemn these threats of violence. Like so many in our community, I am dismayed by the acts of anti-Semitism we are seeing across the county and know that we must join together, as one people, to reject bigotry and prejudice. Hate will not be tolerated in Indianapolis and today, I ask that people of all faiths and backgrounds work together in affirming our city’s commitment to being a welcoming, safe place for all."

The Anti-Defamation League is calling on Jewish institutions to review their safety procedures in light of this latest wave of bomb threats.

Last week, the White House denounced the threats made against Jewish Community Centers across the country.

"Hatred and hate-motivated violence of any kind have no place in a country founded on the promise of individual freedom. The President has made it abundantly clear that these actions are unacceptable," said White House Deputy Press Secretary Lindsay Walters.

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