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Colleyville police investigating hate crime after anti-Semitic flyers found in neighborhoods, department says

Police said Sunday they're aware of flyers that were inside plastic sandwich bags and distributed to driveways during the overnight hours.

COLLEYVILLE, Texas — Police in Colleyville are investigating anti-Semitic and white separatist flyers found in neighborhoods around the city as a hate crime, the department said.

Police said Sunday they're aware of flyers that were inside plastic sandwich bags and distributed to driveways during the overnight hours.

Colleyville police did not release further details on the investigation.

There was also a report of the same types of flyers seen in Garland. The police department told WFAA that it will be investigating and would send the case to the district attorney's office to determine if a hate crime is present.

The FBI's Dallas office confirmed it was made aware of the flyers and is working with local law enforcement to determine any federal law violations. The agency said there isn't an open federal investigation as of yet.

According to Colleyville police, anti-Semitic flyers such as the ones found in North Texas have also been reportedly seen in cities such as San Francisco, Miami and Denver.

"I am saddened that individuals chose to bring this intolerance to Colleyville," the city's mayor, Richard Newton, said in a statement. "These viewpoints do not reflect those I find in our community members... The City unequivocally denounces hate in any form - it has no place in our city."

Jewish communities are still reeling just over a month after an armed man took four people hostage, including a rabbi, at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville. The Jan. 15 incident lasted nearly 12 hours and ended with the hostages making it out safe.

The suspect, 44-year-old Malik Akram, died at the scene. The FBI said Akram had been repeatedly demanding the release of a convicted terrorist. 

The FBI said it believes Akram targeted the synagogue in an act of terrorism. The incident is also being investigated as a hate crime.

In a statement regarding the flyers, the Colleyville synagogue said, in part, "We are hopeful that the individual(s) responsible will be identified and prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Circulating hate speech cannot be taken lightly."

"Unfortunately, anti-Semitism is a reality in the United States and around the world. Each of us has a responsibility to root out hate, and work towards building a community where all belong and all can thrive," the synagogue added.

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