A brave Muslim high school student helped NYPD apprehend a homeless man who randomly slammed his open hand into an Orthodox Jewish woman’s face on a Brooklyn subway train Tuesday night, the New York Daily News reported on Wednesday, quoting police officials.
17-year-old Ahmed Khalifa, of Midwood, chased down Rayvon Jones, 31, after he hit the woman, who was reading a book on a Coney Island-bound Q train near the Newkirk Ave. station at about 7:50 p.m. on Tuesday.
“It was a very hard slap, I almost could feel the slap,” Khalifa told the New York Daily News. “He was 6-foot-6, and a very big, big guy.”
The woman suffered a gash on her lip, as well as swelling and bruising. She was taken to Methodist Hospital in stable condition.
Khalifa said that he was riding the Q home after work. After he heard a commotion, he looked up and saw Jones hit the woman.
The impact smashed her glasses, and she dropped to the floor and was unconscious for a few seconds, Khalifa said. Another woman rushed to her side to help her.
She came to Khalifa and sobbed, “Why would he do this to me? Why would he do this to me?” as she desperately reached around to find her glasses.
Jones fled the scene. Khalifa raced after him. An Orthodox passerby asked what happened and offered to help track down Jones.
“He was driving, so I got in,” Khalifa said. “We were just talking about how it was a hate crime. We found him at the bus stop and called the Shomrim.”
Numerous members of the Shomrim arrived to help find Jones. Khalifa spotted Jones at a bus stop as Jones tried to alight from a bus. The police came a short while later.
“I got out and looked at the window and yelled, ‘Get out, you coward, why are you trying to hide!’” Khalifa said. “He pulled on his hoodie like he was trying not to be recognized.”
The police began removing people from the bus, and Jones got violent. “I’m going to kill all of you! I’m going to kill all of you!” he screamed, according to Khalifa.
When police pulled him out of the bus, he struggled and shouted, “Don’t touch me!”
In the police car, Jones kicked both doors so hard that they couldn’t open.
Later, one of the Shomrim members drove Khalifa home.
“Some people are like, ‘She’s Jewish, why did you help her,’” Khalifa said. “I’m like, everyone is equal. I treat everyone the same way.”
Khalifa said he doesn’t want to be called a hero. “It was just something anybody should do,” he said. “It’s not that big of a deal to me.”
Jones was charged with assault, and was awaiting arraignment Wednesday in the Brooklyn Criminal Court.