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Alleged assailant in Brooklyn attack on Jewish man is charged with hate crime

James Vincent charged indicted for first-degree strangulation in assault on Menachem Moskowitz, 52, who suffered broken ribs and other injuries

Menachem Moskowitz, 52, who was assaulted and choked on his way back from Shabbat prayers  in the Crown Heights neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York on April 23, 2018. (Screen capture: Twitter)
Menachem Moskowitz, 52, who was assaulted and choked on his way back from Shabbat prayers in the Crown Heights neighborhood in Brooklyn, New York on April 23, 2018. (Screen capture: Twitter)

The accused attacker of an identifiably Jewish man walking home from Shabbat services in Brooklyn was indicted on hate crime charges.

James Vincent, 40, was arraigned Wednesday in Brooklyn Supreme Court on a 17-count indictment. The charges include first-degree strangulation as a hate crime and second-degree assault as a hate crime. He was arrested last month.

In the April 21 attack in the Crown Heights neighborhood, Menachem Moskowitz, 52, suffered several rib fractures and a black eye. He also had swelling, bruises, and scratches all over his body.

Moskowitz, a father of nine, told CrownHeights.info that he said “good afternoon” to his alleged assailant, who was smoking a cigar on a street corner.

“As soon as [I greeted] him, he began yelling at me ‘you fake Jews, who are you saying hello to? You’re fake Jews and you stole all my money and robbed me, and stole my mortgage and my house. I want to kill you!’” the news website quoted him as saying.

The incident was caught in footage filmed on a security camera.

Moskowitz said he walked away quickly but the alleged assailant caught up with him and put him in a choke hold and threatened to kill him. Two women passers-by separated the men and urged Moskowitz to run.

It was the second in a series of at least three recent attacks on identifiably Jewish men in Crown Heights, which has a large haredi Orthodox population. Vincent has not been connected to other such attacks.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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