Police in New York City are investigating whether two Hasidic men attacked this week in Brooklyn were targeted because of their religion.
A man who yelled he was “fed up with the Jews” attacked a Hasidic man on his way to a Crown Heights synagogue Wednesday, police told WNBC.
— NBC New York (@NBCNewYork) November 5, 2015
Christian Rojas, 36, allegedly knocked a phone out of the victim’s hand and punched him in the face. Police said the victim was dressed in traditional clothing and reading a prayer book.
On Tuesday, an off-duty Hatzolah volunteer was stabbed a few blocks away. David Katz, 34, was hospitalized but is expected to make a full recovery. His attacker, who was wearing a mask, has not been identified.
Hatzolah workers are volunteer emergency medical personnel who typically serve in Jewish communities. Katz was not in uniform but he was wearing a yarmulke and the attack was “clearly premeditated,” witnesses said.
Police do not believe the two incidents are related but are investigating both as possible hate crimes.