Police are looking for two men suspected of attacking an Orthodox Jewish man in front of a Brooklyn synagogue, CBS News reported Sunday night. Police say this has been the third attack on an Orthodox Jewish man in Brooklyn in less than a week.
The attack took place in Midwood on Saturday night. The Jewish victim, 45, was on his way home when he ran into two men who were drinking in front of a synagogue near Avenue J and East 15th Street. Police say a verbal dispute erupted, following which the men pushed their victim to the ground, pulled his belt and began whipping him in his face repeatedly.
When the medical team arrived, the man’s face and head were full of cuts and bruises.
According to a tweet by former New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind, “A young Jewish man was called a [expletive] Jew and then belted over the head with a metal belt buckle!”
Police are still investigating two other hate crimes against religious Jewish men from last week. Last Tuesday morning, in Crown Heights, a man hit a rabbi in the face with a paving stone, broke his nose and knocked out two of his teeth. And last Thursday, also in Crown Heights, a number of suspects threw ice at an Orthodox Jewish man who was sitting in traffic, injuring his eye.
City Councilman Chaim Deutsch said that this week will see the opening of a new Office of Hate Crimes Prevention, which he helped create, and promised: “We will tackle this head-on as New Yorkers, through educators within the Hate Crimes Unit and also victims who will come out and tell their stories.”
It would also be nice if there were more police presence in Orthodox Jewish neighborhoods, until the education effort kicks in. Police say they have received close to 150 anti-Semitic hate crime complaints city-wide so far this year, close to double the number of such complaints this time last year.