ADL Horrified Over Antisemitic Assault of Jewish Man in Staten Island
The Anti-Defamation League “expressed horror” on Tuesday over the antisemitic assault of a Jewish man in Staten Island earlier this week by three teenagers who apparently threw a rock, called out anti-Jewish slurs and threatened to kill.
“If the reports are accurate, this incident is terribly disturbing because it was clearly motivated by anti-Semitic animus, and particularly troubling due to the young age of the assailants,” said Evan R. Bernstein, the ADL New York regional director.
“Such a horrific assault leaves an immensely searing impact, and we call on community and religious leaders, elected officials and public figures in the wake of this appalling incident to make clear that there is absolutely no room for attacks on any member of the community because of their faith,” said Bernstein.
On Monday, police announced that three teenagers had been arrested on hate crime charges after attacking a man wearing a yarmulke in Meiers Corners on Sunday night. The eldest of the three, Kareem Cook, 17, of Stapleton, was carrying a kitchen knife when officers from the NYPD stopped him SI Live reported. An NYPD spokesman said he was charged with aggravated harassment as a hate crime, menacing as a hate crime and criminal possession of a weapon, according to the report. The other two arrested were 15-year-old minors, so police did not release their names.
According to initial police reports, the three teenagers began heckling the man from a bus stop just a few blocks from Young Israel of Staten Island, an Orthodox synagogue. As he neared, they surrounded him and threatened to beat him up, noting the yarmulke on his head.
Earlier this month the NYPD noted a 29 percent increase in antisemitic crimes committed this year so far compared to 2014, at 53 acts. But the ADL played down the announcement, noting that most incidents were “low-level, non-violent offenses,” and not “a cause for alarm.”
The ADL said Staten Island suffered 14 antisemitic incidents in 2014, though New York State experienced a 14% increase, including 147 acts citywide.