Politicians condemn possible hate crime in Williamsburg; NYPD investigates

April 9, 2013 Heather Chin
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The NYPD’s Hate Crimes Unit is investigating the burning of 12 mezuzahs — pieces of parchment inscribed with verses from the Torah that are hung in doorways of observant Jews — on Monday at 85 Taylor Street at the Taylor-Wythe Houses and on Tuesday at 130 Clymer Street at the Independence House.

Monday was Holocaust Remembrance Day.

No one was harmed, but the incident has disturbed many in Williamsburg and Brooklyn’s Orthodox Jewish community, who are referring to it as harassment, at best.

However, as noted by Etzion Neuer, regional director for the Anti-Defamation League, they “are confident that the perpetrators of these heinous acts will be quickly brought to justice.”

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Political leaders such as Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and State Senator Eric Adams — both of whom are running for political office as mayor and Brooklyn Borough President, respectively — have also condemned the potential hate crime as “hateful,” “unforgivable” and against Brooklyn’s history as a diverse home for immigrants.

A person of interest in the case is described by the NYPD as a Hispanic male in his early 20s. He was seen in surveillance video wearing “a purple do-rag and a black jacket with an “NY” symbol on the shoulder and “New York” across the chest.”

Anyone with information in regards to these incidents is asked to call Crime stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477).  The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime stoppers website at WWW.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.COM or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577.

All calls are strictly confidential.


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