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December 20, 2017

Vandalized menorahs in Jersey Shore town investigated as hate crime

Two of the damaged displays had been set up by Margate officials; a third belonged to a Jewish Community Center

Three public menorahs commemorating the celebration of Hanukkah were vandalized at the Jersey Shore in an act police are officially investigating as a hate crime.

The damaged menorahs were all on display in Margate, and the first was reported Monday. One of the menorahs reportedly has been vandalized repeatedly for weeks. CBS3 said a Margate electrician first noticed two damaged city-owned menorahs, located at the city ball fields and pier.

The third damaged menorah was outside the Milton and Betty Katz Jewish Community Center (JCC).

Photos of the damage show menorahs knocked over, arms of the menorahs broken off, or parts of the menorahs’ glass shattered.

Detective Chris Taronchier of the Margate police is heading the investigation, police told the Press of Atlantic City, though there are no reported suspects yet.

“During Hanukkah, we dedicate ourselves to shining the light on those who are persecuted, and no act of anti-Semitic vandalism will stop us from doing that,” state Sen. Colin Bell told the Press of Atlantic City. Bell is also a member of the JCC.

“Together, as a community, we will continue to persevere, as we have for thousands of years.”

NBC10 reported the menorah at the pier has been repaired while the others are still being fixed.