Kent Police received a call at around 12pm on Friday 18 August 2023 reporting that several gravestones had been pushed over and damaged in the grounds of Chatham Memorial Synagogue in High Street, Rochester.

It is believed the damage, which amounts to around £19,000, may have been caused between Tuesday 15 and Friday 18 August.

Chief Inspector Trevor Jenner, Kent Police’s District Commander for Medway, said: ‘This type of incident is thankfully very rare, but has understandably caused a great deal of distress in the local community. We are therefore very keen to identify the person responsible and bring them to justice.

‘We are investigating this as a hate crime and local patrols will continue to monitor the area. If anyone has any concerns, I would encourage them to speak to officers and PCSOs when they see them.

’I’d like to hear from anyone who may have seen or heard the damage being caused. It is likely that the suspect would have caused a lot of noise while committing this offence and there are residential buildings nearby so it’s possible somebody heard the incident but may not have realised what was happening.

‘We have spoken to those responsible for the cemetery and will continue to offer crime prevention advice and the investigation is ongoing.’

Anyone who has information is urged to call 01634 792209 quoting crime reference 46/152042/23.

You can also call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111 or complete the online form on their website.

By Ed

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