LAPD to beef up security after 2 shootings in Jewish community in 2 days

Two shootings in two days that have rattled the Jewish community in Southern California are being investigated, authorities said.

The Los Angeles Police Department announced on Thursday, Feb. 16 that they are searching for a suspect in a pair of shootings that happened earlier this week in Pico-Robertson, home to a large Jewish community.

The first shooting happened on Feb. 15 around 9:55 a.m. in the 1400 block of Shenandoah Street, close to Jewish synagogues. The second happened a day later, on Feb. 16, around 8:30 a.m. in the 1600 block of South Bedford Street.

LAPD said that the suspect in both shootings was described as an Asian man with a mustache and a goatee, possibly driving a white car. The shootings are not being investigated as a hate crime at this time.

According to the Anti-Defamation League of Southern California, the victim of Thursday’s shooting was attacked while leaving a synagogue.

The victims in both shootings survived.

Jewish communities nationwide have been on high alert after two men were arrested following threats to synagogues in New York and among a growing trend of hate crimes.

More LAPD officers will be present in the areas where the shootings happened, police said.

“We have been in close contact with religious leaders as well as individual and community organizational stakeholders,” the LAPD said in a statement on Feb. 16. “We are re-allocating police resources to provide a highly visible and preventative presence in the area.”

Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna wrote on his Twitter page that his agency also “will increase patrol checks around Jewish synagogues and Jewish centers in our jurisdictions. Patrol stations will remain vigilant and report any threats of violence to Major Crimes.”

LA Mayor Karen Bass said in a statement on Twitter, “These attacks against members of our Jewish community are unacceptable. My office is monitoring these incidents.”

City News Service contributed to this report.

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