MONSEY, N.Y. (AP) A man accused of storming into a rabbis home and stabbing five people as they celebrated Hanukkah in an Orthodox Jewish community north of New York City was raised to embrace tolerance but has a history of mental illness, his family said.
Grafton Thomas has a long history of mental illness and hospitalizations. He has no history of like violent acts and no convictions for any crime, his family said late Sunday in a statement issued by attorney Michael Sussman. He has no known history of anti-Semitism and was raised in a home which embraced and respected all religions and races. He is not a member of any hate groups.
We believe the actions of which he is accused, if committed by him, tragically reflect profound mental illness, the statement said.