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November 1, 2012 12:26 pm

In Crown Heights, the Police Have Failed the Jewish Community

avatar by Elad Nehorai

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A Crown Heights youth was beaten by police.

Over the past week, there has been an attempted rape of an engaged woman and a brutal beating and mugging of a Jewish man in Crown Heights. In the case of the attempted rape, despite the woman’s attempts to convince them otherwise, the police refused to classify it as an attempted rape.  While the claim is that Hurricane Sandy has caused the lack of a real response by the police, there is little question that there is a pattern of neglect and failure among the police in Crown Heights, Brooklyn to protect their Jewish citizens.

For example, there have been repeated attacks aimed specifically at the Jewish residents of Crown Heights.  During the High Holidays of the Jewish month of Tishrei the Kinsgston Avenue subway station, across from the Chabad headquarters of 770 Eastern Parkway, was gratified with slogans such as, “The world would be better off if all the Jews were lampshades” and “Hitler was right re the Jews”.  During that same period, a man followed a Jewish woman home and robbed her and a man was mugged during Rosh Hashana, the Jewish new year.  No suspects have been caught in any of these attacks.

In addition, a month ago, a young man was beaten by a police officer in the Aliyah Center, a home for troubled youths in Crown Heights. It got a lot of press and attention thanks to a video surveillance system installed in the center.  If it wasn’t for the video, of course, that man would still be in jail right now and that cop would be out on the street.

And while the residents are worried and outraged about all this, they feel powerless to do anything about the failure of their police force. Besides a small gathering to protest the police beating of the man in the Aliyah center, there has been very little attention given to the danger we all feel we are in, and our belief that the police have failed in their duty.

It’s time that this changes. The people in Crown Heights need to demand that the press in New York begins reporting these incidents more widely. In addition, the press has a responsibility to report these as attacks specifically targeted at Jews.  The video of the man who was mugged this week needs to be shared. And most importantly, pressure needs to be put on the Crown Heights police force to do their jobs.

Unless we organize and speak out about the failure of our police department to prevent and investigate these crimes, and the failure of the press to report them, the attacks will continue.

Please share this article, as well as the video of the beating of the man, that took place on President street and Albany Avenue, posted below.

The police have failed us. It is time that we speak out.

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