Members of a predominantly Black church in Monmouth County were attacked Saturday in what the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General is investigating as a “potentially bias-motivated” act of violence.
Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin said he was investigating the incident, as well as another attack on a house of worship in northern New Jersey. In Bloomfield, Essex County, police are searching for a man who wore a ski mask and threw a Molotov cocktail at the door of Temple Ner Tamid on Sunday morning.
Platkin’s office did not immediately release the name of the Monmouth County church that was attacked on Saturday or details of the incident, but said state, federal and local law enforcement authorities were investigating both incidents.
“We are cognizant of the fact that these attacks have occurred while violence continues to erupt in Israel, and while our own nation reckons with violence at home,” the attorney general said in a statement on Sunday. “I want to reassure all New Jerseyans — especially our friends and neighbors of the Black community and the Jewish faith — that law enforcement continues to take the appropriate steps to increase our presence around sensitive places so that everyone in our state can worship, love, and live without fear of violence or threat.”
In response to the attacks, Gov. Phil Murphy said Sunday in a post on Twitter: “Let me be clear: there is no place for violence or hate in New Jersey and I strongly condemn these acts.
The New Jersey Department of Homeland Security urged members of the public and faith-based communities to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to local police or the New Jersey Counterterrorism Watch Desk at 866-4-SAFE-NJ (866-472-3365) or [email protected].
Check back to app.com for more on this developing story.
Amanda Oglesby is an Ocean County native who covers Brick, Barnegat and Lacey townships as well as the environment. She has worked for the Press for more than a decade. Reach her at @OglesbyAPP, [email protected] or 732-557-5701.
This article originally appeared on Asbury Park Press: Monmouth County church attack under investigation: NJ Attorney General