Deandre Charles

Rabbi Slain on Way to Services at Miami Synagogue in Apparent Botched Robbery

An Orthodox rabbi was gunned down in broad daylight in an apparent botched robbery as he walked to Shabbat services at a Miami synagogue, police said.

Joseph Raksin, 60, who was visiting his granddaughter and other relatives, was walking to shul at Bais Menachem when two young men approached him in Northeast Miami-Dade near North Miami Beach.

An altercation ensued and one of the men pulled out a gun and shot Raksin. He was airlifted to a local hospital where he later died.

The attackers fled and police were hunting for them Sunday.

Police said there were no immediate signs that the murder was an anti-Semitic act.

“At this time there is no indication of this being a hate crime,” said Miami-Dade police spokeswoman Elena Hernandez in a statement.

The shocking crime took place just a few blocks away from Torah V’Emunah, an Orthodox synagogue where swastikas were spraypainted last month.

Brian Siegal, director of the American Jewish Committee’s (AJC) Miami and Broward Regional Office, told the Miami Herald that the community was worried the murder could be related to the hate vandalism.

“Coming so soon and so close to the synagogue that was vandalized last week with swastikas and pro-Hamas graffiti, obviously we’re suspicious that it’s linked, but that remains to be seen,” he said.

The Anti-Defamation League responded with shock to the murder.

“This is a terrible tragedy. While the motivation for this crime is still being investigated, nothing can justify the killing of an innocent man walking to his place of worship to pray on his holy day,” the ADL said in a statement.

[]: ""


Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Rabbi Slain on Way to Services at Miami Synagogue in Apparent Botched Robbery

Thank you!

This article has been sent!