MONSEY, N.Y. (AP) — A man attacked a Hanukkah celebration at a rabbi’s home north of New York City late Saturday, stabbing and wounding five people before fleeing in a vehicle, police said.
The attack appeared to be the latest in a string targeting Jews in the region, including a massacre at a kosher grocery store in New Jersey earlier this month.
Police said the stabbings happened at around 10 p.m. in Monsey, one of several Hudson Valley towns that have seen an influx in large numbers of Hasidic Jews in recent years.
Ramapo Police Chief Brad Weidel said hours later that New York City police had located a vehicle and possible suspect being sought in connection with the stabbing.
New York City Police wouldn’t immediately confirm whether anyone was in custody.
Photos and videos posted on Twitter showed a large emergency response with paramedics running and pushing stretchers. A number of police and emergency vehicles could be seen in the images.
The Anti-Defamation League of New York and New Jersey says it’s also aware of reports and was at the scene in Monsey.
Monsey is about an hour north of New York City.
The Orthodox Jewish Public Affairs Council for the Hudson Valley region tweeted reports that the stabbings took place at the house of a Hasidic rabbi while they were celebrating Hanukkah.
Several state and local officials have described the location of the stabbing as a synagogue. The rabbi’s home is next door to a synagogue.
Saturday was the seventh night of Hanukkah.
Weidel said the five people were taken to hospitals for treatment. It is unclear what the extent of their injuries are or a motive in the stabbing.
The stabbings occurred a month after a man was stabbed while walking to a Monsey synagogue. The man required surgery.
Jewish communities in the New York City metro area have been troubled following a deadly Dec. 10 shooting rampage at a northern New Jersey kosher market. Six people died in the shooting, including the two killers, a police officer and three people who had been inside the store. New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal said the attack was driven by hatred of Jews and law enforcement.
In November, a man was stabbed while walking to a Monsey synagogue. The man required surgery. It’s unknown if the person suspected in that stabbing has been arrested.
Around New York City, police have gotten at least six reports this week — and eight since Dec. 13 — of attacks possibly propelled by anti-Jewish bias.
Mayor Bill de Blasio said Friday that police presence would increase in Brooklyn neighborhoods with large Jewish populations.