A 14-year-old boy has been arrested in connection with the 3-alarm fire that destroyed the historic Beth Hamedrash Hagadol Synagogue on Manhattan’s Lower East Side on Sunday night. Here’s what we know:
The New York Post is reporting that the suspect—who has been charged with arson and whose identity has not been released because he is a minor—was arrested Tuesday night at his home, which is located near the synagogue.
Police began to suspect the fire may have been intentionally set when they reviewed surveillance footage and saw what appeared to be three teens running away from the building shortly after the fire began.
Cops busted him after speaking to one or more of his friends who were present at the time the fire was set, and implicated him as the person who started the blaze, police sources said.
The people who provided that information told cops that their friend acted alone—even though they accompanied the suspect into the abandoned temple, sources said.
This morning ABC7 reported that detectives have the names of the suspect’s two friends who were also spotted in the surveillance footage. This news source has also reported that “although the fire occurred in what was once a house of worship, it was not investigated as a bias crime.”
The suspect is expected to be arraigned at Manhattan Family Court later today. We will update this post with any further details.
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