2nd Update: Elected Officials Condemn Mosque Incident

Town and county elected officlals condemned an incident involving a man who went to a mosque in Melville, made statements about the Hamas-Israeli conflict, and wouldn’t leave the building.

The man, Jordan Endler, was arrested the next day and charged with trespassing and harassment.

Huntington Town Councilman Dr. Dave Bennardo said, “While we abhor the horrific violence that precipitated the war in the Middle East, we condemn any attempt to intimidate American citizens who had absolutely nothing to do with the current conflict. Religious freedom is a founding principle of the United States, and it is critical that this right be protected. It is also important that we not allow any American citizen, especially one from our own Huntington community, to be blamed or punished, because of an incident with which they had no involvement. Furthermore, it is never appropriate for our residents to be intimidated because of their faith or national origin.

He added, “There’s no question that we live in complicated times. People have a right to their opinions and passions. There is a great deal of justifiable anger regarding the recent atrocities, and we too call for the immediate release of all hostages, but it’s critical that this anger not be misplaced on innocent Americans, especially those from our Huntington family.”

In a video statement posted to Facebook, Suffolk County Legislator Rebecca Sanin said that the mosque was a victim of “an extraordinary act of hate, somethng we cannot accept here in Suffolk County.”  She said that the police had acted swiftly and added, “I call on all my neighbors to stand with the Islamic Center of Melville to oppose hate and do everything we can to make sure we are advancing peace so that every family can live, play and worship safely here in our great town.”


Suffolk County Police arrested a man Thursday for trespassing and harassing members at a Melville mosque.

Jordan Endler entered the Islamic Center of Melville at 118 East Old Neck Road, on Wednesday at 2:36 p.m. and made statements about the hostages in the Israel-Palestine conflict. He also was filming the scene.  Endler was asked to leave  by members of the mosque but refused.

Police were called and Endler, an attorney, left the location after police arrived.

After an investigation Following an investigation by Hate Crimes Unit detectives, Endler, 46, was arrested at his East Northport home, at 7:53 p.m.

He was charged with Criminal Trespass 3rd Degree and Harassment 2nd Degree. On Friday, he was arraigned in First District Court and released on his own recognizance.  Judge Alonzo G. Jacobs issued an order of protection
for the mosque  employee at the request of the District Attorney’s office.

“I want to remind everyone that no matter what else is going on in the world, here in Suffolk County, we will not tolerate bias or hate. I want to thank the Muslim community for alerting us to this incident, so that detectives from our office and the Suffolk County Police Department’s Hate Crimes Unit can continue to investigate it,” said District Attorney Ray Tierney. “My office will
continue to work with our law enforcement partners to ensure that all Suffolk County residents feel safe in their houses of worship, regardless of their faith.”——–


Suffolk police are investigating after a man went to the Islamic Center of Melville on Wednesday, and walked into a building where he began filming while demanding the release of hostages seized in the Hamas attack on Israel in October.

In the Wednesday incident, the man, according to the clip obtained by News12, continues to film the inside of the building even as members of the mosque challenged him. When members of the mosque called Suffolk County police, officers arrived, spoke with him, and let him go, News12 reported.

Leaders of the mosque told News12 that they didn’t think police took the incident seriously enough. But Thursday, officers from the department’s hate crimes unit returned to the mosque, News12 reported, and mosque officials said they thought the matter was being handled more thoroughly.

The building where the outburst occurred is being used temporarily until construction is complete on the mosque.

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