UNITED STATES NEWS

New charge filed against man accused of firing shotgun outside New York synagogue

Dec 11, 2023, 6:31 PM

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A new federal charge was filed Monday against a man accused of firing a shotgun into the air outside a synagogue in upstate New York.

Mufid Fawaz Alkhader, 28, was arrested Thursday after shots were fired outside Temple Israel of Albany. The Iraqi-born U.S. citizen said “Free Palestine” when officers arrested him. He later told investigators that he felt affected by events in the Middle East, according to police officials and court filings.

Federal prosecutors initially charged Alkhader with possession of a firearm by a prohibited person — a charge authorities said was related to his admitted use of marijuana.

He was charged Monday with conspiracy to make a false statement during the purchase of a firearm. The new charge stems from the recent purchase of the shotgun authorities said he used in the shooting.

Alkhader did not think he was eligible to buy a firearm because of a previous protective order, so he gave a friend money to buy the shotgun for him. The unidentified friend falsely indicated on a federal form that he was buying the firearm for himself, federal prosecutors said.

A call seeking comment from Alkhader’s public defender was not answered Monday evening.

Alkhader is being held without bail.

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New charge filed against man accused of firing shotgun outside New York synagogue