December 12, 2018

Rocks thrown at Wilshire Boulevard Temple, not believed to be anti-Semitic

The Wilshire Boulevard Temple Erika J. Glazer campus in Koreatown went on lockdown for eight minutes on March 14 after a male suspect began “throwing rocks and kicking the glass doors,” according to a statement from the temple’s executive director, Howard Kaplan, and director of safety and security, Cory Wenter.

No damage was caused by the incident, which occurred at the Hobart Street entrance to the synagogue, nor was anybody injured.

Security personnel responded “within one minute of the subject’s first contact with the Hobart door” and the situation was “quickly resolved,” Kaplan and Wenter said in a joint statement issued on Tuesday in the late-afternoon.

“He was restrained without resistance by our security team and held until [the Los Angeles Police Department] arrived and placed him in custody. The individual had no weapons and was described as mentally unstable, agitated by the world. There does not appear to be any connection to any anti-Semitic activity or motivation,” the statement says.

The incident occurred as the community is at heightened alert over ultimately discredited anti-Semitic bomb threats that have been targeting Jewish community centers, day schools and other Jewish institutions nationwide since Jan. 4. Two bomb threats, both of which turned out to be hoaxes, targeted the Westside Jewish Community Center on Feb. 27 and March 9.

Kaplan and Wenter, in their message, praised synagogue security in light of Tuesday’s event: “We are grateful for the prompt response by our staff and security officers.”