All Texas synagogue hostages safe after hourslong standoff

Written by on January 16, 2022

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Man reportedly takes hostages at Texas synagogue

Authorities say a person apparently took hostages Saturday throughout providers at a synagogue close to Fort Value, Texas. (Jan. 15)


  • 4 hostages have been taken at Congregation Beth Israel throughout morning providers on Saturday
  • One hostage has been launched, however the hostage-taker is asking for the discharge of Aafia Siddiqui
  • Siddiqui was sentenced in 2010 to 86 years in jail for tried homicide and assault

Hostages taken Saturday by a person inside a Texas synagogue are secure, officers confirmed.

Saturday evening, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted, “Prayers answered. All hostages are out alive and secure,” after a standoff between a hostage-taker and legislation enforcement that began throughout a morning service at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas, and lasted into the evening. 

The Colleyville police division tweeted the scenario was “resolved” late Saturday and the hostages have been secure. Colleyville Police Division Chief Michael Miller confirmed the suspect is useless.

A legislation enforcement official confirmed the hostage-taker was shot. It was not instantly clear if the suspect was shot by police. The hostages have been confirmed secure simply after 10:30 p.m. Jap. 

FBI Dallas Particular Agent in Cost Matthew DeSarno declined to establish the hostage-taker, however stated investigators already have been concerned in a world inquiry, reaching to Nice Britain and Israel, to study extra a few attainable motive.

DeSarno didn’t elaborate on how the hostage taker died, however stated the capturing incident can be reviewed by authorities. He stated the FBI’s elite Hostage Rescue Unit was referred to as to the scene Saturday, flying to the Dallas space as a part of a 60-person federal contingent.

Native legislation enforcement and FBI disaster negotiators responded to Congregation Beth Israel Saturday morning. Negotiators communicated with the suspect, who initially took 4 hostages, although one man was later launched unhurt, in line with the Colleyville Police Division.

The hostage-taker referred to as for the discharge of Aafia Siddiqui, who was sentenced in 2010 to 86 years in jail for the tried homicide and assault of U.S. nationals and U.S. officers and workers in Afghanistan, a legislation enforcement official stated. Siddiqui is in federal jail in Forth Value, Texas.

The connection between the hostage-taker and the prisoner is unclear, stated the official who shouldn’t be approved to remark publicly.

A rabbi and three others have been among the many hostages.

Shortly after 5 p.m. Jap, White Home Press Secretary Jen Psaki tweeted President Joe Biden was briefed in regards to the “creating hostage scenario within the Dallas space.” Biden thanked legislation enforcement in an announcement launched after the scenario was resolved late Saturday. 

“There may be extra we are going to study within the days forward in regards to the motivations of the hostage taker,” Biden stated within the assertion. “However let me be clear to anybody who intends to unfold hate — we are going to stand in opposition to anti-Semitism and in opposition to the rise of extremism on this nation.”

Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker leads Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville. Cytron-Walker is the kind of rabbi who’s “properly revered throughout the religion communities within the space,” in line with Rabbi Rick Sarason, who taught Cytron-Walker at Hebrew Union School-Jewish Institute of Faith in Cincinnati from 2002 till 2006.

Sarason stated Saturday’s menace at Congregation Beth Israel made him recall different threats made in opposition to Jewish homes of worship in recent times.

“Communities of religion — synagogues, church buildings, mosques — are locations of coexistence and understanding and so forth and so forth and Rabbi Charlie has at all times been a primary exemplar of that and I simply hope that everyone comes out of this safely,” Sarason advised USA TODAY.

For a time the scenario was livestreamed on the synagogue’s Fb web page. The livestream minimize out round 2:50 p.m. Jap and was unavailable after it was stopped. 

The Texas Division of Public Security’s freeway patrol and prison investigations division have been additionally on the scene, Texas DPS Sgt. Josue De La Cerda advised USA TODAY.

The Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives tweeted they have been “aiding” Dallas FBI and native authorities.

Saturday morning’s service was livestreamed on Fb previous to the hostage scenario. The livestream captured audio of a voice yelling contained in the synagogue. Video captured by the livestream did not seem to point out what was happening off-camera.

“We eliminated the video from the synagogue’s web page, and also will take away content material praising or supporting this incident,” a Meta spokesperson stated in an announcement to USA TODAY. “We’re in touch with legislation enforcement because the scenario continues to evolve.”

The Houston chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations stated they condemned Saturday’s incident.

“This antisemitic assault in opposition to a home of worship is unacceptable. We stand in solidarity with the Jewish group, and we pray that legislation enforcement authorities are capable of swiftly free the hostages and convey them to security,” the group’s assertion stated.

The Colleyville Police Division tweeted residents within the instant space have been evacuated and folks have been requested to keep away from the realm. Colleyville, a group of about 26,000 folks, is about 15 miles northeast of Fort Value and 25 miles northwest of Dallas.

The Anti-Defamation League tweeted Saturday afternoon that it “is conscious of the continuing scenario in Colleyville, TX and is engaged with native and federal authorities and the group’s leaders.”

Who’s Aafia Siddiqui

In accordance with an indictment filed in Manhattan federal courtroom, Siddiqui, a Pakistani neuroscientist, was detained in 2008 by Afghan authorities, who discovered quite a lot of gadgets in her possession, together with handwritten notes that referred to a “mass casualty assault” and that listed numerous places in the US, together with the Empire State Constructing, the Statue of Liberty, Wall Road, and the Brooklyn Bridge.

Different notes in Siddiqui’s possession referred to the development of “soiled bombs,” and mentioned numerous methods to assault “enemies,” together with by destroying reconnaissance drones, utilizing underwater bombs, and deploying gliders, in line with federal prosecutors.

When U.S. officers tried to interview Siddiqui in Ghazni, Afghanistan, she grabbed a U.S. Military officer’s M-Four rifle and fired it at one other U.S. Military officer and different members of the U.S. interview crew. Throughout the capturing, Siddiqui exclaimed her intent and need to kill Individuals.

Siddiqui’s lawyer advised USA TODAY on Saturday that her consumer was not concerned in any manner with the hostage scenario, and that her solely brother, an architect who lives in Houston, has confirmed that he has nothing to do with it both. 

“She has nothing to do with this. She’s had nothing to do with any types of violence which are achieved in her identify. And she or he maintains her innocence,” stated Marwa Elbially, Siddiqui’s Texas-based lawyer.

Elbially stated she had not been given the identify of the suspect or different particulars about him by authorities. Elbially stated she heard about information reviews of the incident the place the hostage-taker referred to Siddiqui as his “sister.” 

“I don’t know who this particular person is or how they even got here up with linking him to her household instantly like that,” Elbially stated. “I knew, clearly and instantly, once they initially stated that it was her brother that it was utterly false.”

Elbially, who has represented Siddiqui for the previous 12 months, added: “What I can say is that we actually pray that no one is harmed or injured and that the police are capable of deal with the scenario and take him into custody.”

Contributing: The Related Press.

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