An Orthodox Jewish man was stabbed multiple times on Wednesday morning in Monsey, New York, while walking to morning prayers at a local synagogue, local reports said.
Police were searching for the attacker or attackers, who apparently fled the scene by car.
The attack, some 70 yards from the synagogue and religious center, was initially reported before 6 a.m. as a vehicular accident.
“Upon arrival it was quickly determined that the individual had been stabbed and slashed with an unknown weapon and not struck by a vehicle,” read a statement from the Town of Ramapo Police Department. “Investigation confirms that the victim who was walking to synagogue was stabbed more than once by at least one individual in the street.”
The assailant fled the scene before police and first responders arrived, according to Aaron Hershkowitz, an assistant to the synagogue’s rabbi. The incident occurred at approximately 5:45 a.m.
Rockland Hatzolah, an emergency medical service, reached the victim and began treating him. He is now undergoing surgery and is in critical condition, Hershkowitz said.
The motive was not immediately clear.
A member of the local emergency service, Chaveirim, told The Journal News that security camera footage had captured the attack. He said the victim was “jumped and beaten and stabbed multiple times.”
Monsey is home to a large Orthodox Jewish community.