Massachusetts: Man stole Holocaust memorial, gave it to friend

A man stole a memorial to child Holocaust victims and gave it to a friend as a gift. Police say it was not a hate crime. 

By: AP and World Israel News Staff

Police say a Massachusetts man stole a memorial to children murdered in the Holocaust and gave it to a friend as a gift.

Milton police say the sculpture depicting a child’s hands inside two Stars of David was recovered last month. It had been missing from the Milton Cemetery for more than a year.

Sculptor Fred Manasse created the piece to honor his sister, Myriam, and other children killed by the Nazis during World War II. He told the Patriot Ledger the recovered piece will be put back in place with added security protections.

“After all this time, I didn’t expect to get it back,” Manasse told the Patriot Ledger. “I’m very happy it’s been recovered and it’s been arranged to put it back with additional security measures.”

Police are seeking criminal charges against a 19-year-old suspect. His name has not been released.

Investigators say there’s no evidence the theft was motivated by anti-Semitism.

“I’m glad it wasn’t a hate crime, it was just a mischievous theft or a theft for profit,” Manasse said.

Manasse, a Holocaust survivor, travels to schools to speak about his Holocaust experience. He sees a positive outcome from the incident in that it called attention to the victims.

“It’s a good thing that it did receive attention because the message of what I tried to create was brought out,” he said.