Man Charged in Synagogue Vandalism Wanted to “Shoot Jews”: Prosecutors

DuPage County prosecutors are petitioning to revoke bail for a man charged with vandalizing a west suburban synagogue last month after he told his mother he was going to “shoot Jews.”

The bail petition, filed Monday, comes after 40-year-old John White, of Westmont, pleaded not guilty to hate crime, institutional vandalism and armed violence counts after he allegedly vandalized a Lombard synagogue.

Bail was set last month at $5 million and White’s attorney is calling for that to be reduced, but the hearing was delayed until next week after prosecutors petitioned for the bail to be revoked Monday.

“Defendant has clearly expressed his intention to kill or cause harm to those of the Jewish faith,” the petition read. “If he is admitted to bail he poses a real and present threat to the physical safety of any Jewish person.”

The petition notes a witness indicated that White was driving his vehicle around the property at Congregation Etz Chaim at 1710 S. Highland Ave. They claim he smashed out roughly seven windows at the synagogue and used a pencil to write on the front entrance to the building, “Kill Israel and Death.”

A pencil, ax, machete and hatchet were all recovered by police at the scene.

Authorities also found six weapons and thousands of rounds of ammunition at White’s home.

According to the petition, White’s mother told authorities her son told her he was going to “shoot Jews” before he stormed out of the house.

“He clearly is a threat to us and a threat, I think, to other people as well,” said Rabbi Steven Bob. “It could have been much worse.”

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