PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The Pawtucket man accused of leaving a threatening voicemail on a Jewish temple’s answering machine was arraigned Thursday morning.
Vincent Johnson, 65, called a bomb threat into Temple Beth-El over the weekend, according to police. He was arrested after investigators traced the voicemail back to his phone.
Johnson has been charged with bomb threat and similar false reports, as well as disorderly conduct. He was granted $10,000 surety bail and ordered to stay away from the temple.
The bomb threat was called in the same weekend Hamas gunmen stormed from the blockaded Gaza Strip and into nearby Israeli towns, killing hundreds and wounding thousands.
“Let me be clear, actions like this will not be tolerated,” Gov. Dan McKee wrote in a social media post following Johnson’s arrest.
Sen. Jack Reed echoed McKee’s sentiment.
“It’s unacceptable,” he said. “There’s no room for antisemitism in America, or anti-anyism.”
Rep. Seth Magaziner stressed the importance of taking these threats seriously.
“Unfortunately, acts of violent hate are on the rise in our country,” he said. “In Rhode Island and elsewhere, I urge everyone to remain vigilant.”
Johnson’s next court date is scheduled for Jan. 25.