Jewish Children’s Museum in New York Evacuated After Bomb Threat

Jewish institutions across the U.S. and Canada have been hit with more than 100 bomb threats so far this year, all of them hoaxes.

Officials respond to a bomb threat at the Jewish Community Center in Kentucky. March 8, 2017.
BRYAN WOOLSTON/REUTERS

The Jewish Children’s Museum in Brooklyn was evacuated after receiving an emailed bomb threat. Police ordered the evacuation Thursday morning following a call to the police, AM New York reported.

Devorah Halberstam, the museum’s director of foundation and government services, told JTA the evacuation was still ongoing as of 11:15am.

“It’s a trying time for us as a Jewish people especially, and we need to be aware and we need to take heed, and we need to be careful,” Halberstam said.

She added: “I’m referring to all the threats that have been going on both locally and internationally — it’s something that is very frightening. Unfortunately anti-Semitism has been around for the longest time and I guess things don’t change, now it’s done by emails and phone calls. They use technology to hide behind it.”

Jewish institutions, including community centers and Anti-Defamation League offices, have been hit with more than 100 bomb threats so far this year, all of them hoaxes. Tuesday and Wednesday saw the sixth wave of threats, with 21 Jewish sites targeted in the United States and Canada.

Last week, the New York Police Department said that anti-Semitic incidents were up 94 percent in New York City over this time last year.

On March 3, a St. Louis man has been charged for making at least eight bomb threats against Jewish community centers and the Anti-Defamation League.

Juan Thompson, 31, made some of the threats in the name of a former romantic partner he had been cyberstalking, according to a statement Friday by the U.S. Attorney of Southern New York. Thompson has been charged with cyberstalking, which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.