Harris County DA Kim Ogg, faith leaders announce efforts on protecting synagogues, places of worship

HOUSTON – Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg was joined by faith leaders, community leaders and police agencies to announce the county’s efforts in protecting synagogues and places of worships in wake of the hostage-taking incident at a Texas synagogue.

Ogg announced several measurements being taken, such as security, support, training and other resources that will be provided in coming days.

“There is no place for hate or hate crimes in this community,” Ogg said.

She said the DA’s Office has been joined by a faith council because “we need God because it’s too much violence in our city.”

Ogg said the hostage-taking incident at the Texas synagogue was targeted because they are Jewish. She noted that these incidents are meant to instill fear in the Jewish community and how hate crimes pose a public threat and safety to the faith-based community.

“Hate crime is a symbolic crime,” she said.

Local police agencies across the Houston area stated that they are providing additional resources, security measures and doing everything they can in regards to these hate crimes.

The Pasadena Police Department said it has increased patrols in its local Jewish synagogues and faith based community following the recent incident to ensure citizens feel protected. The Baytown and Houston police departments said they are both staffed and ready to protect their general and faith-based communities.

Houston Fire Chief Samuel Pena also said his departments are actively involved, as some of these hate crimes involve arsonists.

The FBI stated that they are treating the recent attack against the Texas synagogue as an act of terrorism against the Jewish community.

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