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US seeks death penalty for accused synagogue gunman

US seeks death penalty for accused synagogue gunman

FILE PHOTO: Police vehicles are deployed near the vicinity of the home of Pittsburgh synagogue shooting suspect Robert Bowers in Baldwin borough, Pittsburgh, on Oct 27, 2018. (Photo: Reuters/John Altdorfer)

NEW YORK: The United States government will seek the death penalty for a man charged with killing 11 Jewish worshippers at a synagogue, according to court documents filed on Monday (Aug 26).

Robert Bowers, 46, allegedly opened fire inside the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh on October 27, 2018, reportedly yelling "All Jews must die!"

The incident occurred during Shabbat services and was the worst anti-Semitic attack in recent US history.

Bowers was arrested at the scene and later charged with 63 counts, including hate crimes resulting in murder and attempted murder.

Other charges related to obstruction of religious practice resulting in murder and attempted murder, and multiple gun-related crimes.

Prosecutors filed a "notice of intent to seek the death penalty" at a Pennsylvania district court Monday.

In "the event of a conviction, a sentence of death is justified," it said.

Bowers has pleaded not guilty. A trial date has not yet been set.

The attack added to fears about a resurgence of far-right extremists and neo-Nazis across the country.

Bowers expressed strong anti-Semitic views over the internet ahead of the attack.

Source: AFP/ec

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