Seattle synagogues, UW Hillel receive suspicious packages
Nov 3, 2023, 8:49 PM | Updated: 9:38 pm
Two Seattle synagogues and Hillel at the University of Washington received suspicious packages on Friday, according to Seattle Police. Mayor Bruce Harrell confirmed that “there is no doubt that these were sent with the intent to target, harm, and frighten Jewish neighbors.”
Just before 5 p.m., Seattle Fire sent a hazmat crew to a synagogue at the 6500 block of 52nd Avenue South, near Seward Park. Sephardic Bikur Holim is located here. Seattle Police confirmed a suspicious package with a white, powdery substance was found in an envelope in the package.
At approximately 6:30 p.m., a second suspicious package with a white, powdery substance was found at the 5400 block of Wilson Avenue South. The Ezra Bessaroth synagogue is located here.
In both instances, Seattle Police say the substance is believed to be non-hazardous.
While investigating both incidents, a third call of a suspicious package came in from the 4700 block of 17th Avenue Northeast, where UW Hillel is located. There was no white, powdery substance found at this location.
Seattle Police say there are no injuries or damage to property.
“This is extremely disturbing,” Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell said in a Friday evening X post. “I’m grateful that first responders were able to swiftly determine these were non-hazardous materials, but there is no doubt that these were sent with the intent to target, harm, and frighten Jewish neighbors. This targeted threat is wrong.”
He went on to condemn anti-Semitic hate crimes, calling them “appalling.”
“We must reject these acts of hate and make clear that hateful threats and actions have no place in our community – period,” he added.
This is a developing story. Stay tuned for updates.
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