An assailant who killed two civilians outside of a German synagogue told prosecutors he planned to carry out a greater massacre on the holy day of Yom Kippur.
A wooden door on the Judische Gereinde Halle Temple was the only thing that stopped the shooter from reaching the people worshiping inside. As is done during all services, the handle on the outside of the door was removed and the door was locked from the inside.
Yom Kippur is the holiest day on the Jewish calendar.
The suspect, 27, reportedly attached a phone to his head to document his strategic placement of explosives around the building, none of which ended up detonating.
Federal prosecutors say the suspect “armed himself with many weapons, possibly self-made, and had a large quantity of explosives.” Prosecutors noted the suspect was inspired by the a massacre in a New Zealand mosque, which claimed the lives of 51 people.
The suspect was also motivated by “scary Antisemitism, xenophobia, and racism,” said federal prosecutors.