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Charlotte Jewish center beefs up security following string of threats

In response to a string of threats locally and nationwide, Shalom Park Jewish center in south Charlotte, announced that it will increase security.
In response to a string of threats locally and nationwide, Shalom Park Jewish center in south Charlotte, announced that it will increase security. File

In response to a string of threats locally and nationwide, Shalom Park, the Jewish center in south Charlotte, announced that it will increase security.

The center, along with the Jewish Federation of Greater Charlotte, held a meeting Tuesday night to address concerns that stemmed from recent threats against the center and Charlotte’s Jewish community. Alongside elected officials, law enforcement and representatives from the Anti-Defamation League, the group discussed a local response to a nationwide rise in anti-Semitism.

“It is our top priority to keep our community safe under all circumstances, including these recent ones,” said Sue Worrel, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Greater Charlotte. Increased police patrols and other steps will be taken, she said.

Shalom Park was one of hundreds of Jewish centers nationwide to receive threats in recent months. In January, police were called to the 54-acre campus – which has synagogues, schools and a community center – after Shalom Park received an anonymous phone threat. No suspicious devices were found, but the area had to be evacuated while law enforcement assessed the scene.

In February, another anonymous threat led to the evacuation of Shalom Park’s Providence Road campus.

Charlotte Mayor Jennifer Roberts condemned the threats made against Shalom Park in a Facebook post earlier this month, calling them “frightening and unacceptable.”

“Anti-Semitism has no place in our community or in this country,” Roberts said in her statement March 4.

LaVendrick Smith; 704-358-5101; @LaVendrickS

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