3 arrested after hate symbols left at New York synagogue, Black church
Three people were arrested after pamphlets with hate symbols were distributed at various locations in Hornell, N.Y., including a synagogue and a Black church.
Aubrey Dragonetti, 31, Dylan Henry, 30 and Ryan Mulhollen, 27, were each charged with 115 counts of aggravated harassment, according to a statement from the city’s police department.
Police said that on July 9 and 10, officials began an investigation into a number of pamphlets and stickers depicting swastikas and racial slurs that were left at the places of worship as well as other public and private properties in Hornell, which is located about 55 miles away from Rochester in southern New York.
A flyer with the words “Aryan National Army” and an illustration of a skull inside a swastika was discovered by a member of Rehoboth Deliverance Ministries, which has a predominantly Black congregation, according to Hornell newspaper The Evening Tribune. The pamphlet was attached to the church door Sunday morning as people were arriving for services.
“Because of all that has happened over the last few years, months; especially what happened in Buffalo, people get scared,” a church member told the Tribune, referencing the Buffalo, N.Y., shooting in May that was carried out by a shooter who harbored white nationalist beliefs.
Police said the same flyer was also left at Hornell’s Temple Beth-Elsynagogue.
A search warrant in conjunction with New York State Police was conducted in the 130 block of River Street, which lead to the arrest of the three suspects, the Hornell Police Department said.
Police Chief T.J. Murray told the Tribune that the search resulted in the discovery of “a lot of their electronic equipment,” adding that the suspects “were using the internet to recruit people, as they explained it to us.”
The aggravated harassment charge is a Class E felony and is defined under New York law as an action “with intent to harass, annoy, threaten or alarm another person” based on “such person’s race, color, national origin, ancestry, gender, gender identity or expression, religion.”
The three suspects appeared in Steuben County centralized arraignment court Monday, according to the Tribune. Henry was listed as being held without bail, and Dragonetti and Mulhollen were arraigned and released.