Published: Fri, November 02, 2018
Worldwide | By Victor Meyer

Pittsburgh Synagogue shooting suspect pleads not guilty as funerals continue

Pittsburgh Synagogue shooting suspect pleads not guilty as funerals continue

It added 15 criminal counts total, including new hate-crime charges pertaining to the wounding of two worshippers and the use of unsafe weapons against a dozen police officers, including the four injured in a gunfight with the suspect.

Robert Bowers, 46, who had been wounded in a gunfight with police and made his initial court appearance on Monday shackled to a wheelchair, walked into Thursday's proceeding upright and without need of assistance, wearing a red jumpsuit and a bandage on his left arm.

U.S. President Donald Trump said he supported giving Bowers the death sentence.

Bowers had been set for a preliminary hearing on the evidence, but federal prosecutors instead took the case to a grand jury.

Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, a Democrat, told reporters before the visit was announced that the White House ought to consult with the families of the victims about their preferences and asked that the president not come during a funeral. The shooting suspect, Robert Gregory Bowers, wrote on the platform Gab just before the massacre: "HIAS likes to bring invaders in that kill our people".

Bowers is suspected of using Glock.357 handguns and a Colt AR-15 semiautomatic rifle to carry out the tragedy.

According to the indictment, Bowers drove to the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh's Squirrel Hill neighborhood last Saturday where members of three congregations gathered to engage in religious worship.

This undated Pennsylvania Department of Transportation photo shows Robert Bowers, the suspect in the deadly shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh on October 27, 2018.

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"The possible penalties", he was informed by Troy Rivetti, one of the prosecutors, "are first a sentence of death".

Fienberg's sons, Anthony, of Paris, and Howard, of Vienna, Virginia, said she spent five years caring for their father as he battled cancer, then, after his death a few years ago, devoted more of her time and energy to Tree of Life.

Gottfried, 65, was a husband, a brother and a compassionate hand who helped many in his community.

Amid the first funerals for victims on Tuesday, Trump visited Tree of Life. Jerry Rabinowitz, Daniel Stein and Cecil and David Rosenthal who were among 11 people killed in the shooting rampage at the Tree of Life synagogue Saturday.

Sanders said Trump did not speak publicly Tuesday to denounce anti-Semitism because he has spoken about it before.

Their daughter, Michelle Simon Weis, said she enjoyed going with her mother to Costco, where Bernice, 84, make sure to try the food samples.

Bowers remained jailed without bail ahead of an arraignment scheduled for Thursday. The oldest victim, 97-year-old Rose Mallinger, will be honored at a service Friday.

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