Trump says synagogue should have had armed guard to stop deadly shooting

UPDATE Police Official Says Multiple Casualties Reported after Shooting at Pittsburgh Synagogue

President Donald Trump on Saturday lamented the "devastating" attack by a shooter on a Pittsburgh synagogue, saying it lays bare the "hate in our country" and speculating that the deadly violence would have been curbed if the building had had an armed guard. Bowers, who was in fair condition at a hospital, was charged late Saturday with 29 federal counts, including hate crimes and weapons offenses. "The sad part is that people are waiting to find out who the dead are because it's such a close knit community there's like one degree of separation and chances are everyone will know at least one person who died".

The suspect is in custody and it is believed he acted alone.

"Our nation and the world are shocked and stunned by the grief". The shooter was described as a white, heavy set with beard.

Special agent Bob Jones of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which is leading the probe, said the crime scene was the worst he had seen in 22 years with the agency.

Striking an unusually somber tone, President Donald Trump denounced "a wicked act of mass murder", while his daughter Ivanka, a convert to Judaism, declared: "America is stronger than the acts of a depraved bigot and anti-Semite".

Rapid reaction SWAT members leave the scene the shooting.

This image widely distributed by USA media on October 27, 2018, shows a Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) ID picture of Robert Bowers, who authorities confirmed is the suspected attacker, and in custody.

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Trump - who has been accused of fueling tensions with his divisive rhetoric - briefly considered scrapping a campaign rally later Saturday over the Pittsburgh attack, but finally made a decision to maintain it.

Eisenberg, the former synagogue president, said officials at Tree of Life had not gotten any threats that he knew of before the shooting. He said he planned to travel to Pittsburgh, but offered no details. We will stand together like a rock against hatred and against those who try to harm Jews all over the world. "We stand together with the American people in the face of this horrendous anti-Semitic brutality".

Jonathan Greenblatt, chief executive officer of the Anti-Defamation League, said the group believes Saturday's attack was the deadliest on the Jewish community in US history.

"Jews targeted on Shabbat morning at synagogue, a holy place of worship, is unconscionable".

"One way or another there was a young family there with probably an 8-day-old or young infant there for what was supposed to be a very happy event", he says.

The Pittsburgh attack comes with the United States witnessing a sharp spike in anti-Semitic incidents, having surged 57 percent from 2016 to 2017, to 1,986 from 1,267, according to the ADL.

At a political rally in Murphysboro, Illinois, Trump said "the evil anti-Semitic attack is an assault on all of us".

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The mass shooting raised immediate alarm in Jewish communities around the country.

"This evil Anti-Semitic attack is an assault on all of us", Mr Trump told supporters at an election rally in IL where he began by addressing the attack at length - drawing loud cheers as he vowed to fully enforce the death penalty for such crimes.

The Tree of Life Synagogue, whose congregation was founded more than 150 years ago, is in a residential neighborhood about five miles (eight kilometers) east of downtown Pittsburgh.

"We had services going on in the chapel when we heard a loud noise", he told the Tribune-Review newspaper.

Pittsburgh Public Safety Director Wendell Hissrich told reporters that there were 11 fatalities and six injuries including four policemen.

"Anti-Jewish bigotry, and all religious and ethnic bigotry, is a awful sin", he said.

He said security was a "major concern" during his stint as president, and active shooting situations and training were conducted, "if something horrific like this happened".

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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, "I was heartbroken and appalled by the murderous attack on a Pittsburgh synagogue today". "It is very bad", Hissrich said.

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