Alleged Monsey synagogue vandal arrested; Jewish leaders laud police efforts
Leaders in Ramapo's Orthodox Jewish community are lauding local police for quickly tracking down the person they believe scrawled swastikas into the walls of a Monsey synagogue.
Police arrested 32-year-old Rolando DeJesus Gomez-Velazquez, of Hillcrest. He is charged with criminal mischief as a hate crime and aggravated harassment for the swastikas.
Members of the synagogue found the swastikas and other damage on Friday, June 17, and notified police.
Activists praised Ramapo leaders after Monday's announcement of the arrest. Yossi Gestetner, of the Rockland County-based Orthodox Jewish Public Affairs Council, says he's pleased to see authorities prioritize this investigation.
"Law enforcement did an amazing job to get onto it. Officials spoke out about it. People in media have continued to shine a light on it, which impacts how government responds. I feel very confident with how this developed," he says.
A Ramapo town judge released Gomez-Velazquez with a court-appearance ticket for a later date.