WEST PALM BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Words of hate were found stuffed into plastic bags in West Palm Beach For the second time this month.
Michael Hoffman with the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County called this an act of hate.
“I am not surprised but continue to be shocked,” he said. “I am shocked that it is hitting so close to home.”
On Sunday, bags filled with antisemitic propaganda were left on multiple cars in the employee parking lot of the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, which led to an active scene filled with deputies, a bomb squad and hazmat teams to test the bags while searching the area.
This happened just one day after members of the Jewish faith gathered to show solidarity against antisemitism.
“They are trying to invoke a kind of fear in our community,” said Hoffman.
Hoffman also referred to two other recent incidents, like the dropping of antisemitic flyers in driveways in Boca Raton, along with a Nazi swastika projected onto a downtown West Palm Beach AT&T building.
“These individuals want attention, and they are going to continue to do this as long as they can garnish attention, but at the same time, they do risk facing charges if they push it too far,” said State Attorney Dave Aronberg.
According to him, those charges are in the works, as he speaks to state legislators about potential new laws to hold these actions accountable.
“Like broadcasting messages on a private building without the owner’s consent and strengthening our anti-littering laws so that people that throw these things on your driveways can at least be held accountable for littering,” said Aronberg.
For now, as leaders investigate what can be done, the Jewish community has a message of its own.
“It is frustrating, but for now, the proper response is for the community to come together like we did last night: send the message that hate is never the answer in Palm Beach County,” said Aronberg.
A recent report from the Anti-Defamation League says the number of reported incidents rose 50% between 2020 and 2021.
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