Two Orthodox Jewish men have been attacked in the past two weeks in Kew Gardens Hills in incidents being investigated by police as possible bias crimes.
Cops say the first incident was a 28-year-old man hit in the back with BB gun pellets on Friday, Sept. 11, at 7:55 p.m. The victim had been walking home from a local synagogue when he was hit on 75th Avenue between 150th and 147th streets. He did not have any serious injuries.
The second victim was a 25-year-old Orthodox Jewish man hit by a BB gun on his left leg on Friday, Sept. 18, according to police. He was on the corner of 73rd Ave. and 150th Street. The man had been walking to a synagogue at 10:27 a.m. at the time of the incident; he also was not seriously injured.
Both incidents took place during the Sabbath, and are still under investigation.
Councilman Rory Lancman said that his office is in contact with the Police Department to ensure that security concerns are addressed, particularly during upcoming religious holidays.
“I was deeply disturbed to learn that two Jewish victims were hit by BB guns in Kew Gardens Hills,” Lancman said. “The NYPD is appropriately investigating these incidents as potential anti-Semitic hate crimes.”
Assemblyman Michael Simanowitz said he was confident that all perpetrators will be brought to justice and that the recent string of crimes will end.
“I am deeply saddened to hear about the recent incident that betrays an unfortunate prejudice alive in our neighborhood,” Simanowitz said. “We live in a community that should celebrate and be proud of our diversity. Acts of bigotry will not be tolerated or go unpunished.”
Anyone with information regarding the attacks is urged to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS, visit their website or send a text message to 274637 (CRIMES), then enter TIP577. All calls and messages are kept confidential.