Anton Nathaniel Redding, 24, the suspect in the vandalism that took place at Nessah Synagogue in Beverly Hills, was arraigned on Dec. 23 in Los Angeles Superior Court. Redding entered a “not guilty” plea to charges stemming from the Dec. 14 incident. Redding remains in custody, with bail set at $250,000.
Originally from Millersville, Pennsylvania, Redding was arrested last week after investigators tracked him to Hawaii. He was charged with Vandalism of a Religious Property and Commercial Burglary (594.3(a) and 459 of the California Penal Code). The criminal complaint against Redding also includes a penalty enhancement for a Hate Crime under 422.75(a) of the California Penal Code. If convicted as charged, Redding faces a possible maximum sentence of six years in state prison.
The vandalism at Nessah Synagogue took place after a suspect forced entry in the early morning hours of Dec. 14. The Synagogue’s interior was heavily ransacked, furniture overturned, and several Jewish relics were damaged, including Torahs, scrolls, and prayer books. Printed materials from the Synagogue were scattered throughout the interior as well.
The Vandalism at Nessah garnered national attention, in addition to strong response from officials in Beverly Hills.
“We are committed to the safety and security of our religious institutions,” said Beverly Hills Police Chief Sandra Spagnoli. “The Beverly Hills Police Department stands with our community in solidarity, to protect and serve, and commit to keeping Beverly Hills a safe place to live, work, and worship.”
Redding is scheduled to return to court on Jan. 30, 2020.