Mayor Bill de Blasio and top police officials met with Jewish leaders on Staten Island to denounce anti-Semitic crimes and say they have no place in New York City. NY1's Grace Rauh filed the following report.
As Mayor Bill de Blasio and police brass met with Jewish leaders on Staten Island, police elsewhere were busy responding to five anti-Semitic incidents that occurred that very morning.
"These are coming in at an unprecedented rate. We will handle each with an investigation," said NYPD Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce.
One was a bomb threat against the Anti-Defamation League's headquarters in Midtown.
"The call that came in threatened an explosive device that was lethal, and there was a time period given in which people were told they had to evacuate," said Etzion Neuer, deputy director of the ADL's New York office.
The report of new anti-Semitic activity added even more urgency to Mayor Bill de Blasio's message.
"We have not seen anything like this in many years, this level of hatred directed against the Jewish community, this many threats. So we are really in an unprecedented moment," de Blasio said.
Police say hate crimes are up 113 percent so far this year, in large part because anti-Semitic crimes have more than doubled from this same period last year. There have been 55 anti-Semitic incidents in the five boroughs since the start of the year, up from 19 during the same period a year earlier.
"This attack on members of the Jewish faith, it's not just an attack on them, it's an attack on everybody in New York City," said Police Commissioner James O'Neill.
Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday that the state police will coordinate with federal and local law enforcement and launch an investigation into the Anti-Defamation League bomb threat and two others directed against Jewish community centers upstate.
The mayor has previously blamed President Donald Trump for the rise in anti-Semitic hate crimes, but he had a more muted message on Staten Island, where the president is more popular.
"In a moment like this, everyone should speak up," he said.
The mayor says if you see something, say something. Call 911 if you believe a hate crime is taking place, and call 311 if you have any information that might be helpful to the NYPD.