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Arson Plot Thwarted by Quick Acting Citizens

October 3, 2011

Yitzchok Friedman was changing a tire on his car on Sunday when he noticed smoke pouring out of the Krasna Bais Medrash in Borough Park.

Thinking fast, Friedman immediately opened the door to the building and covered his face with his jacket. After observing that the lectern was in flames, he called 911, ran across the street to get a fire extinguisher, and returned to the building.

The owner of the paper goods store where Friedman got the fire extinguisher, Moshe Friedlander, joined Friedman and ran back inside the burning building. First they checked to see if anyone was still inside the building, and then began to put out the fire, which by this time was shooting flames out of the lectern.

“But for [Friedman] the entire building would have burnt down,” said City Councilman David Greenfield (D-Brooklyn), who visited the scene.

One source said that authorities do not believe it was an anti-Semitic attack. “They are looking into several people from the [synagogue],” the source said.

Friedman saw someone inside when he first entered the building, but “I couldn’t see who it was,” he said.

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