New Jersey man pleads guilty to badly injuring 3 in series of violent antisemitic attacks

Dion Marsh, who went on a hate crime spree in April 2022, including trying to kill 4 Jewish people, admits to violating the Federal Hate Crimes Prevention Act

Dion Marsh, the suspect in an alleged antisemitic crime spree in New Jersey, in a photo released by the Lakewood police on April 8, 2022. (Courtesy/Lakewood Township Police Department)
Dion Marsh, the suspect in an alleged antisemitic crime spree in New Jersey, in a photo released by the Lakewood police on April 8, 2022. (Courtesy/Lakewood Township Police Department)

A New Jersey man pleaded guilty to a series of attacks on Jews in a violent crime spree in April 2022, the US Attorney’s Office in the District of New Jersey said on Friday.

Dion Marsh, 29, of Manchester, New Jersey, pleaded guilty to five counts of violating the federal Hate Crimes Prevention Act, as well as carjacking.

Marsh was charged with willfully causing bodily injury to five people, and attempting to kill and injure four of them because they were Jewish, the US Attorney said.

“This defendant is being held accountable for his series of depraved, antisemitic assaults against members of the Orthodox Jewish community,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.

“Hate-filled acts of violence, intended to harm, intimidate and isolate communities, have no place in our society,” Clarke said. “The Justice Department will continue to aggressively prosecute perpetrators of antisemitic violence across our country.”

A sentencing hearing is scheduled for June 11.

The attacks critically injured two Jewish men, and seriously injured a third.

The rampage started at 1:18 p.m. on Friday, April 8, in the town of Lakewood, when Marsh forced an identifiably Jewish man out of his car, assaulting and injuring him, and driving off in the vehicle.

At 6:06 p.m. on the same day, Marsh rammed another Orthodox Jewish man while driving a different vehicle. He was attempting to kill the victim and broke several of his bones, prosecutors said.

At 6:55 p.m., driving the stolen vehicle, Marsh rammed another Orthodox Jewish man, then got out of the vehicle and stabbed the victim in the chest with a knife, prosecutors said.

At 8:23 p.m., during Shabbat, Marsh rammed another Orthodox Jewish man in the nearby Jackson Township, attempting to kill him and causing several broken bones and internal injuries.

Law enforcement arrested Marsh at his home that night.

The Anti-Defamation League said at the time it was “saddened and outraged” by the attacks.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy applauded law enforcement for apprehending the alleged attacker.

“The safety of our communities, and notably our communities of faith, is not only a paramount concern but among my highest priorities,” Murphy said.

JTA contributed to this report.

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