The Jewish Community Center in Denver added its name last night to an ever-growing list of JCCs across the country that have received bomb threats in just the last few years.
According to a dispatch sent by the JCC out to its membership base earlier today, the bomb threat was sent via the JCC’s “contact us” page on their website.
According to the email the JCC sent out: “(the bomb threat) was consistent in language with 40 plus other threats made in the same way to other JCCs around the country over the past few months, including several others last night.”
As a precaution, officials at the JCC delayed opening its onsite school this morning while they met with their security officials on-site, and had a bomb-sniffing dog sweep the building, confirming that the threat was not credible.
In just the last several days, bomb threats have been reported at JCCs around the country, including Baltimore (second one in two weeks), San Francisco, and Nassau County in New York.
In 2020, 50 JCCs in 23 different states were targeted with a coordinated wave of bomb threats via email over the course of a week in February. While none of these threats turned out to be credible, they illustrated an ongoing campaign of of harassment and antisemitic hate that has become a markedly growing problem in the United States since 2016. Last year marked a new record high of antisemitic incidents tracked and recorded by the Anti Defamation League: 2,717 — an average of more than seven incidents every single day.
Here in Colorado such threats carry perhaps even more weight in light of the FBI’s 2019 arrest of Richard Holzer, a Pueblo white supremacist who attempted to bomb the city’s synagogue, Temple Emanuel. Last February a federal judge sentenced Holzer to nearly 20 years in prison.
The Denver JCC was not able to immediately respond to a request for comment. This article will be updated with any response received.
UPDATE, 4:21 PM: According to Mike Sophir, CEO of the JCC, Denver Police are investigating the matter.