The NYPD Hate Crime Task Force is investigating a possible anti-Semitic act in a Brooklyn apartment building.
Police say at least a dozen religious Jewish doorway ornaments, called mezuzahs, were burned in an apartment building in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn.
The burned mezuzahs were discovered on Monday, which was Holocaust Remembrance Day on the Jewish calendar.
A mezuzah is a miniature scroll bearing Torah verses in a protective case, and religious Jews say it is a holy commandment to keep it on a doorpost.
Whoever was responsible for the damage apparently moved through the third to 12th floors of the building. Some of the mezuzahs burned slightly and others were completely burned.
"I just came out of my house and smelled fire," said a resident of one of the targeted apartments, who refused to go on camera. "All of a sudden, I saw mezuzahs burning. I saw flame, I blew and it stopped."
"I don't know what to say, I'm in shock," said one person at the building. "I hope they'll find them. Definitely, they'll find them."
One victim said that someone was stealing mezuzahs a few years ago in the same building, which has primarily Hasidic residents. It was not known Monday if that case was solved or was related to the present incident.
Others said they were now concerned for their security.
"Really very worried, very worried and I feel scared," said a resident.
Police are still investigating the incident.
There are security cameras inside and outside of the building. Brooklyn Councilman Stephen Levin told NY1 he believes the cameras work.
Anyone with information on the case should contact the Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS, or text CRIMES and then enter TIP577, or visit www.nypdcrimestoppers.com.