Man accused of making threats against NYC Jewish community charged

The man accused of making threats on social media warning of shootings at New York City synagogues and other Jewish sites was arraigned Sunday morning.

Christopher Brown was arrested Saturday by the MTA Police inside Penn Station. 

He has been charged with six felony weapons and firearms charges, along with making terroristic threats.

Brown and his accomplice, 22-year-old Matthew Mahrer, were spotted by MTA police at Penn Station and arrested on Saturday. Authoritie say they had an 8-inch military knife, a swastika arm patch and a ski mask and further investigation found they were in possession of an illegal semi-automatic gun with a 30-round extended clip.

Christopher Brown

Christopher Brown appears in court on Sunday morning after being accused of making threats towards the NYC Jewish community on social media. 

"The tremendous police work here reflects the MTA PD's core purpose," MTA PD Chief John Mueller said in a statement. "Protecting millions of daily commuters in collaboration with our cola and federal law enforcement partners."

"The Manhattan DA's office will now pursue accountability and justice in this case with the full resources of our counter-terrorism program and recently enhanced and expanded hate crimes unit. We do not tolerate illegal guns or hate in this city," Manhattan DA Alvin Bragg said. 

According to the New York Post, a lawyer for Mahrer said that the second suspect is Jewish and is the grandson of a Holocaust survivor. The lawyer also said that Mahrer had been diagnosed with autism, bipolar disorder, anxiety and ADHD. 

The incident highlights growing fears over a rise in anti-Semitism across the nation.

"Last year if you look at the data, 2,717 anti-Semitic incidents reported by the ADL, the highest ever since they started tracking over 40 years ago," said Richard Prem, National Director of the Community Security Service. 

Saturday's incident comes a little more than a week after an 18-year-old from New Jersey was arrested and charged with posting a broad threat against synagogues in the state. 

Authorities say Omar Alkattoul, 18, was arrested Thursday morning. He has been charged with one count of transmitting a threat in interstate and foreign commerce.