Leaders at the Schneerson Synagogue in San Francisco, California, are urging the local district attorney to file hate crime charges against a man arrested for firing a gun inside the shul last week, ABC7 News reported.
The suspect — identified as 51-year-old Dmitri Mishin — entered the synagogue in San Francisco’s Richmond District neighborhood last Wednesday and shot several blank rounds from a pistol as stunned congregants looked on.
He reportedly said, “Hello my Jewish friends. I want to show you something,” and claimed he worked for the Mossad, Israel’s national intelligence agency, before opening fire.
Mishin then exited the building and disappeared. He was tracked down and arrested by police two days later.
Mishin was initially indicted for “disturbing any religious assembly,” “brandishing an imitation firearm,” and “causing another to refrain from engaging in a religious service,” and could face more charges on Tuesday.
He has a history of antisemitic activity on social media, including posts promoting Nazi ideology.
Alon Chanukov — the junior rabbi at the Schneerson Synagogue, which mainly serves Russian-speaking Jews — said, “We want hate crime charges. When they actually charge him officially, we hope that is what he is on trial for, and that is what he is accused of.”