Gov. Andrew Cuomo has directed a state hate crimes task force to investigate the assault this week of an Orthodox Jewish man in Manhattan — the latest in a string of anti-Semitic attacks in the area.
“This horrific and cowardly act of anti-Semitism is repugnant to our values, and it’s even more despicable that it occurred over the holidays,” Cuomo said in a statement. “We have absolutely zero tolerance for bigotry and hate, and we will continue to call it out whenever and wherever it rears its ugly head.”
New York City police said the attack happened Monday morning on the Upper East Side.
Former New York State Assemblyman Dov Hikind said the victim had been wearing a black yarmulke and checking his cellphone when the attack happened on East 41st Street.
“The attacks against Jews are out of control, and we must have a concrete strategy to address the rise of these attacks,” said Hikind, founder of Americans Against Antisemitism. “What is happening in New York City with attacks against Jews has created a deep and growing concern in our community.”
The attack came less than two weeks after a deadly shooting rampage at a New Jersey kosher market that Attorney General Gurbir Grewal said was driven by hatred of Jews and law enforcement.
Meanwhile, the Anti-Defamation League on Wednesday offered a $10,000 reward for information in a separate assault this week on a Jewish man in New York. The group said that attack happened Tuesday in the Crown Heights neighborhood of Brooklyn.
“We are appalled at the sheer frequency and aggressive nature of these incidents,” Evan Bernstein, the group’s regional director in New York and New Jersey, said in a news release.