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Over 150 gravestones vandalized at Jewish cemeteries in Covedale complex

Last Updated 3 weeks by Amnon J. Jobi | Amnon Front Page

Monday morning, the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati said it discovered 176 gravestones were vandalized at the Tifereth Israel Cemetery and the Beth Hamedrash Hagadol Cemetery, according to a press release from the organization.

Both of those cemeteries are located within the Covedale Cemetery complex in Green Township, the Jewish Federation said.

“This act of antisemitic vandalism was uncovered early this morning and has left our community heartbroken,” reads the release, sent Monday afternoon.

The organization said it believes the damage happened between June 25 and July 1, since the vandalism had not occurred the last time the grounds were mowed on June 25. Two sections in the cemetery complex were damaged, the organization said. Tombstones, including some dating back to the late 1800s, were knocked over and some were cracked in half as a result.

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Most of the stones were pushed over onto their faces, making it difficult for officials to determine which families were impacted by the damage. The Jewish Federation said law enforcement advised them not to touch the stones, to preserve the integrity of an investigation.

That investigation is being launched by SAFE Cincinnati, a security arm of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati, in tandem with the Cincinnati Police Department, the FBI and Green Township authorities.

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“We unequivocally condemn this act of hatred and desecration,” the Jewish Federation wrote in the press release. “Our hearts go out to the families affected by this senseless vandalism. The Jewish community in Cincinnati is resilient and we are committed to repairing the damage and restoring the sanctity of these sacred spaces.”

Once law enforcement allows it, the Jewish Federation said it would work to turn over the damaged gravestones to identify which graves were impacted and notify family members as soon as they can.

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The Jewish Federation said it currently isn’t aware of any suspects, but the investigation between SAFE Cincinnati and law enforcement is ongoing.

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