Public Advocate-elect Letitia James, Councilman David Greenfield and Councilman-elect Chaim Deutsch are offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of any individuals responsible for a series of brutal, unprovoked “knockout” attacks in Crown Heights or other neighborhoods throughout Brooklyn.
The NYPD reports at least eight bias incidents in Crown Heights in recent weeks involving the targeting of Jewish residents, especially children and teenagers, including five assaults, several rock throwing attacks and hateful graffiti. The most serious attacks are apparently part of a notorious violent street game called “knockout,” in which the attacker punches the victim in the head without warning in an attempt to knock them unconscious. In one incident on November 10, a group of black males attacked a Jewish pedestrian at the corner of Kingston Avenue and Crown Street. That followed a November 6 attack of a 12-year-old Jewish boy, who was punched and thrown to the sidewalk by a group of 15 black youths, according to media reports.
In response to these heinous attacks, the NYPD has stepped up its patrols of Crown Heights and has distributed wanted posters featuring images of the suspects wanted in the assaults. In addition, community leaders including Councilman Greenfield met in Crown Heights this morning with NYPD officials to discuss the ongoing investigation into the incidents. To encourage any members of the public with information to come forward, James, Greenfield and Deutsch are offering this $1,000 reward for information leading to an arrest and conviction of the individuals responsible for these attacks.
“We have zero tolerance for hate crimes, and these ‘knockout’ attacks in Crown Heights are no exception. I want to thank the 71st Precinct for their increased street presence and prompt response to these unprovoked attacks, and I ask the public to report any information related to these disturbing attacks,” said Council Member James.
“The reports of unprovoked attacks on our city’s streets are disturbing, especially since it appears the victims are being targeted simply because they are Jewish. We have come too far to tolerate senseless violent attacks against anyone, let alone on the basis of their religion. I applaud the NYPD for taking these heinous incidents very seriously and for providing the community with additional officers and patrols. I hope that this reward will encourage anyone with information about any of these outrageous incidents to immediately contact the NYPD,” said Councilman Greenfield.
“The recent ‘knockout’ attacks in the Crown Heights community are an outrage of epic proportions. Everyone, in every community, must stand up to these heinous crimes and denounce them in the strongest way. Violent crimes such as these will not be tolerated. Not here, not now and not ever. I have spoken with the NYPD and was assured that they are doing everything possible to get these cowardly perpetrators into custody as soon as possible,” said Councilman-elect Deutsch.
Anyone with information about these incidents is urged to contact the NYPD’s anonymous Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS.