BOSTON (AP) — A civil rights group says the number of anti-Semitic incidents in Massachusetts increased dramatically in 2017 when compared to the previous year.

The Anti-Defamation League reported Tuesday that there were 177 anti-Semitic incidents reported in 79 Massachusetts communities last year, up 42 percent from 2016.

The incidents included harassment, vandalism, school threats, and threats made against Jewish institutions.

Of those incidents, more than half occurred in schools, an 86 percent increase over 2016.

The ADL says acts of vandalism are particularly concerning because they indicate that people feel emboldened enough to break the law.

Among the examples of 2017 anti-Semitism cited by the organization were vandalism to Boston’s Holocaust Memorial; knocked over headstones in a Jewish cemetery in Melrose; and white nationalist fliers distributed at a college.


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