London Police Search for Assailant Behind Brutal Assault on Pregnant Jewish Woman
Police in London are investigating a horrifying attack on a pregnant Orthodox Jewish woman in the Stamford Hill neighborhood of North London.
The 20-year-old victim, who is seven months pregnant, was rushed to hospital following the assault. She was reported to have sustained minor injuries and been “traumatized” in the attack, while her unborn baby was unharmed.
According to Shomrim — a volunteer security organization serving the Orthodox community — five assaults on other Jewish women have been reported over the last month in the same area, which is home to a large Haredi community. However, the incident involving the pregnant woman, which occurred last Thursday, was the most serious.
CCTV footage of the attack showed the woman walking alone in broad daylight through a gated alleyway. A man was seen following her closely as the woman carried on walking. The man then ran up behind the woman and forced a black plastic bag over her head, grabbing her and punching her brutally at least four times before she broke free. The assailant then ran off in the other direction.
A close-up image of the alleged assailant was later released by Shomrim. It showed a portly middle-aged man with a greying beard who was wearing a black coat and wooly hat and pushing a shopping cart.
Jewish groups expressed shock at the attack and demanded swift action from London’s Metropolitan Police.
“We are extremely disturbed by the vile attack on a pregnant Jewish woman in Stamford Hill. We hope that the perpetrator is swiftly caught and faces justice,” the Board of Deputies of British Jews declared on Twitter. “The attacker’s face was caught on video and we urge anyone who may be aware of his identity to contact the police.”
The American Jewish Committee offered its solidarity. “We are horrified by the vicious assault on a pregnant Jewish woman in London,” the AJC tweeted.