U.S. Sen. Tom Carper of Delaware was inside the Siegel Jewish Community Center in Wilmington on Monday morning when a bomb threat was called in. He was there talking about two previous threats of violence made against the center in recent months.
“While we were talking about this very subject there, another bomb threat was called in,” Carper said in a statement. “It is heartbreaking for such a flash of fear to overtake a place of strong community and joy that brings people of all ages under one roof.”
Monday’s threat was part of the latest wave made today against Jewish community centers in 11 states. Among them were the Perelman Jewish Day School in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania, and the Katz JCC in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. No bombs were found.
In Wilmington, the building was evacuated around 9:30 Monday morning. New Castle County Police used K-9s trained to search for explosives and determined there was no evidence of explosives at the Siegel JCC. Those at the JCC were able to return to the building, and the center continued its regular schedule, although police remained at that scene.
In Cherry Hill, Laurel Springs resident Sarah Woldoff-Kern drove to the Katz JCC to pick up her young daughter during the evacuation.
“It’s still scary, even though [I] probably knew it was a false terror threat,” she said, noting that the Katz JCC had informed parents that there might be such a bomb threat. “It’s still scary as a parent.”
This was the fifth round of similar bomb threats against Jewish institutions since January. The threats come just one day after vandals damaged hundreds of headstones at a Jewish cemetery in Philadelphia.
Mark Eichmann, Joe Hernandez, Emily Cohen contributed to this story.