Five Torah scrolls were reported stolen from the Khal Yirei Hashem Synagogue in Brooklyn this morning, each valued up to $50,000. Two silver crowns and two silver breastplates kept with the scrolls are also missing, and investigators say there were no signs of forced entry, and it looks like somebody crawled through an open window and stole the scrolls from a safe, which was left unlocked. Community leader Jack Meyer said it may have been an inside job. "We're unsure if it was someone within the congregation, but quite a number of people knew the combination to the safe and many people have keys." The "magic key" strikes again?
The congregation's Rabbi is currently in Israel, which may have been a factor in the timing of the theft. Assemblyman Dov Hikind and Councilman David Greenfield are offering a $10,000 reward to anyone that provides information that will lead to an arrest and conviction of the perpetrators, with Hinkind saying, "The emotional and financial loss of our precious Torah scrolls is immeasurable." Each Torah is handwritten and handmade, a process that takes about a year. Rabbi Bernard Freilich said, "People donate them to honor a loved one who may have passed that is invaluable."