A suspect in the slaying of prominent Jewish leader Samantha Woll has been taken into custody, police in Detroit said Wednesday.

The probe is still continuing and there’s still much more work to be done, according to a statement issued by Detroit Police Chief James White.

The suspect’s name was not disclosed.

“While this is an encouraging development in our desire to bring closure for Ms. Woll’s family, it does not represent the conclusion of our work in this case,” White said. “The details of the investigation will remain confidential at this time to ensure the integrity of the important steps that remain.”

Samantha Woll, president of the board at the Isaac Agree Downtown Synagogue in Detroit, on Oct. 13, 2022.David Guralnick / Detroit News via AP

Woll, 40, was found fatally stabbed Oct. 21 outside her home in Detroit’s Lafayette Park neighborhood, triggering immediate concerns that this slaying could be tied to recent tensions surrounding the Israel-Hamas war.

Authorities across the U.S. have voiced their concerns that Middle East violence could lead to attacks on Jewish, Muslim and Arab Americans.

But all the early evidence, Chief White has said, points against antisemitism as a motive in Woll’s murder.

Woll, board president of the Isaac Agree Downtown Synagogue, attended a wedding the night of Oct. 20 and left the festivities at 12:30 a.m., police said.

She was stabbed inside her home and stumbled outside where she collapsed and died, officials said.

State Sen. Stephanie Chang posted a picture of herself, Woll and the newlyweds at the celebration.

Police didn’t make any immediate connections between the wedding and the slaying — other than to say Woll appeared to be in normal, good spirits when she went home.

Friends of the victim said she was widely liked and couldn’t imagine who would want to harm her.

“She was one of those people that lots and lots of people have told me they had a very special, personal relationship with Sam like they were this special person,” Woll’s rabbi, Ariana Silverman, told NBC shortly after the slaying.


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