Synagogue president stabbed to death in Michigan

Samantha Woll was a prominent Jewish leader and worked on an interfaith initiative


The president of a Detroit synagogue board has been stabbed to death outside her home.

Police were called to Samantha Woll’s home on Saturday morning and followed a trail of blood that led to her body. She had multiple stab wounds.

Police say a motive for the attack is not yet known.

Woll, 40, was president of the board of the Isaac Agree Downtown Synagogue and worked to build bridges in the community between Muslims and Jews.

It comes as Rashida Tlaib, the district’s congresswoman, faces stern criticism, and a potential ban by Israel, for continuing to blame the Al-Ahli Gaza hospital bombing on Israel. US intelligence and numerous experts have laid the blame with a failed Palestinian Islamic Jihad rocket.

 The synagogue said in a statement: “We are shocked and saddened to learn of the unexpected death of Samantha Woll, our Board President. May her memory be a blessing.”

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan said Woll’s death ‘has left a huge hole in the Detroit community’.

In a statement, Duggan said he and Woll were celebrating the newly renovated synagogue together just a few weeks ago. 

“This entire city joins with her family and friends in mourning her tragic death,” he said.

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel said: “Sam was as kind a person as I’ve ever known. She was driven by her sincere love of her community, state and country.”

Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin said Woll worked for her to help set up the office and lead it throughout her first term.

She said: “My heart aches that we have lost someone so dedicated to serving others in such a senseless act. I’ll miss her relentless desire to serve & her bright smile seemingly everywhere across the Detroit area.” 

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