Shtreimel and bekishe

FILE PHOTO: Two shtreimels (hats) and a long, black coat known as a bekishe were stolen from the home of a family of five on the night of July 25. Those items were similar to the ones in this photo. (Itzuvit/Wikicommons)

Members of Montreal’s Hasidic Jewish community are upset — and perplexed — after a thief broke into a family’s home and stole some items of traditional clothing.

Two shtreimels — the traditional fur hats many men in Outremont wear — and a long, black coat known as a bekishe were stolen from the home of a family of five on the night of July 25.

“Instead of going for the valuables, they went specifically for the bekishe and the two streimels. And that's worrisome. Had they taken more articles, it wouldn't have raised the suspicions that it did raise,” said community member Zvi Hershcovich.

Hershcovich said the items stolen has his fellow Hasidic Jews scared about a possible attempt at infiltrating the community to do harm.

Alex Werzberger of the Coalition of Outremont Hasidic said the theft was clearly well-planned, but doesn’t understand why someone would want to dress up in stolen clothes to enter a synagogue.

“I find, to my mind, the whole thing interesting in the least of things and odd. I don’t know why they need these garments,” he said.

No suspect behaviour has yet been spotted in Outremont, but the Hasidic community is asking anyone who spots the clothing or who notices anything suspicious to contact police.