Published: Fri, November 02, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Synagogue rampage suspect indicted on 2nd day of funerals

Synagogue rampage suspect indicted on 2nd day of funerals

Bowers is charged with 11 counts each of obstruction of the free exercise of religious beliefs resulting in death and use of a firearm to commit murder during a crime of violence, a conviction on any of which could be punishable by death, according to the indictment.

US President Donald Trump watches as first lady Melania Trump places a flower on a memorial to shooting victims as they stand with Tree of Life Synagogue Rabbi Jeffrey Myers outside the synagogue where a gunman killed and wounded people during a mass shooting in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, US, October 30, 2018.

The two brothers, who lived at a home for people with disabilities, were among the 11 mostly elderly congregants killed when a gunman stormed into the Tree of Life synagogue and opened fire on worshipers, yelling, "All Jews must die".

The White House says the objective of Trump's visit on Tuesday is to "express the support of the American people and to grieve with the Pittsburgh community".

Bowers appeared in court Monday in a wheelchair, where he said nothing other than "Yes" and "Yes, sir" to a judge in response to procedural questions.

Bowers, 46, dressed in a red jumpsuit and with a bandaged arm, spoke in court only to say he understood the charges and to enter a not guilty plea.

Bowers, a truck driver, remained jailed without bail ahead of a preliminary hearing scheduled for Thursday.

Prosecutors have indicated they plan to seek the death penalty for Bowers, but no official decision has been made.

Peduto told CNN's Anderson Cooper that the city's safety resources would be occupied keeping the funeral and Jewish community centers safe, and not available to serve the extensive needs of a presidential visit.

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The panel issued the 44-count indictment Wednesday as funerals continued for the 11 people gunned down Saturday at the Tree of Life Synagogue.

The funerals for the victims began Tuesday and are continuing through the rest of the week.

Trump's visit to Pennsylvania's second-largest city came just seven days before national elections that will determine whether his Republican Party will maintain control of both houses of Congress or whether the Democrats will seize a majority in one chamber or both. Thousands gathered in Squirrel Hill to let Trump know that they didn't want him infringing on their grief as they tried to process the community's painful loss.

Bowers had a history of of posting conspiracy theories about Jews and threatening Jewish communities online.

There will be additional services Wednesday and Thursday.

The first funerals for the victims of the attack were held earlier on Tuesday.

"I agree with the letter and even if he denounced it (white nationalism), I wouldn't believe him because he's a liar". Despite the hellish tragedy, neither Myers nor any other Jewish leadership tried to forbid Trump from visiting Pittsburgh.

"And they shouldn't have to wait years and years".

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