‘Shocked at the wickedness’: Six assailants beat up a Jew on a New York street


NEW YORK — A group of assailants beat a Jewish man on a New York street on Friday night, the latest in a string of attacks on Jews in the area.

According to police and neighborhood groups, six men repeatedly punched and kicked the Hasidic Jewish man in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood, causing him minor injuries.

Police are investigating the case as a hate crime and have made an arrest.

There were no “prior provocative words” between the 21-year-old victim and the attackers before the beating, police said.

The New York Police Department released blurry video of the attack, which appeared to show the group punching the victim and pushing him against the side of the truck, where he collapsed, and the beatings continued.

Police also released a video showing the group that allegedly carried out the attack, offered a $3,500 reward for information and said detectives arrested a 16-year-old and charged him with assault by a gang and assault as a hate crime.

The United Jewish Organizations of Williamsburg, a prominent community group in the neighborhood, called the incident a “disturbing attack fueled by hate.”

He said after the attack, the group of attackers hijacked an Uber driver.

The attack took place on the neighborhood’s Gerry Street near Harrison Avenue at 7:55 p.m. Friday night. Attacks on neighborhood Jews often take place on Friday nights, when religious Jews do not carry cellphones, making it harder to report crimes. Williamsburg is home to the large, tight-knit Satmar Hasidic community.

The Anti-Defamation League offered a $10,000 reward to obtain information leading to an arrest in the case.

“We are shocked by the viciousness of the footage of this incident,” said ADL Regional Director Scott Richman. “No one should be subjected to hateful violence on the streets of New York.”

“We deserve a safer and more tolerant city for all New Yorkers,” he said.

The Shomrim neighborhood advocacy group in the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, on September 15, 2021. (Luke Tress/Times of Israel)

New York Governor Kathy Hochul said Sunday she was “outraged by this act of violence against a Jewish New Yorker.” An attack on one of us is an attack on all of us.

She said she was leading the state police hate crimes task force to help with the investigation. Hochul has repeatedly spoken out against anti-Semitism in New York and has taken action against anti-Jewish crimes.

New York City Congressman Ritchie Torres, a staunch supporter of Jewry and Israel, on Saturday called the wave of anti-Semitic crimes a “moral stain on the soul of our city.”

Jamaal Bowman, Progressive Congressman from New York City, said, “Anti-Semitism is dangerous and is behind disturbing attacks like this.

Police figures showed 81 anti-Semitic hate crimes in New York so far this year, marking an increase of more than 300% from the same period last year.

Anti-Semitic incidents include assaults on city streets against visibly identifiable Jews, racist graffiti, property damage and verbal abuse.

Jews are the target of hate crimes more than any other group in New York, by far, year after year. Anti-Jewish attacks accounted for 38% of all confirmed hate crimes in New York City last year, according to NYPD statistics.

In February, there were 56 hate crimes against Jews, up from 11 in the same month last year. Hate crimes in New York City as a whole increased 100% last year, and other types of crimes increased as well.

Hate crimes generally do not lead to arrests in New York. The 198 confirmed hate crimes against Jews in New York last year resulted in just 58 arrests.

Hundreds of pro-Palestinian protesters chanted ‘Globalization of the Intifada’ during a march through Manhattan last week that stopped outside the offices of several Jewish organizations, which many Jewish and Israeli advocates said interpreted as an allusion to violence against Jews.

The protesters, who have called for the complete dismantling of Israel, say they are targeting the Jewish state, not the Jewish people. The event came as Israel grapples with a wave of deadly terrorism that has killed 11 people.

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