NYPD Calls Lower East Side Synagogue Fire “Arson”

Photo by Rich Caplan.

Photo by Rich Caplan.

A top NYPD official said today that the devastating fire at the Beth Hamedrash Hagadol Synagogue on Sunday is believed to be arson.

While authorities said yesterday they were reviewing video tape showing three young people running from the scene, they stopped short of suggesting that they were responsible for the fire. The blaze destroyed one of the Lower East Side’s most cherished landmarks.

According to DNAinfo, Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said today, “The synagogue fire in the 7th precinct, we do think it’s arson, a purposeful fire.” Boyce added that witnesses have reported seeing people running from the synagogue Sunday night. “We are looking forward to making an arrest in that case,” said Boyce.

The fire department has not yet weighed in on the cause of the fire.