Indianapolis, Indiana – November 5, 2023
The Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) and the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis (JFGI) have issued a statement addressing a recent incident involving a vehicle crashing into a building in a residential neighborhood in Indianapolis.
The incident occurred early Saturday morning when Ruba Awni Almaghtheh reportedly drove her vehicle into a building located at 3500 N Keystone Avenue. The building in question was identified as belonging to and representing a sect of the Black Hebrew Israelites, which has been designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. The building bore a symbol resembling the Star of David on its front door. It is believed that Almaghtheh may have misidentified the building, assuming it represented Israel due to the Hebrew Israelite symbol on the door. The woman was promptly taken into custody, and ongoing coordination with local and federal law enforcement is in progress.
Despite this incident, the threat level for the Jewish community remains unchanged. The Safe Indiana program, responsible for the security of the Jewish community, was immediately alerted and has been collaborating closely with law enforcement in response to this event. The safety and security of the community continue to be of the utmost importance, and measures are in place to ensure preparedness and vigilance. It is noted that the incident was not a targeted attack on a Jewish facility, but rather a result of a misidentification.
This incident serves as a reminder for the community to maintain security protocols, stay vigilant about suspicious activities, and promptly report any concerns to the appropriate authorities. Detailed information about the Safe Indiana program, the community’s security plan, and the incident report form can be accessed at https://www.jewishindianapolis.org/safe-indiana.
The JCRC and JFGI have assured the community that they will provide further updates as the situation develops. For any questions or concerns, community members are encouraged to reach out to Bradley Swim, Safe Indiana Regional Security Advisor, at [email protected].
The statement was signed by Jamie Ratner Rich, JCRC President; Helen Kurlander Goldstein, JFGI President; Jacob Markey, JCRC Executive Director; and Marc Swatez, JFGI CEO.