More anti-Semitic incidents reported in NYC

GRAVESEND, Brooklyn -- New York City is increasing its police presence in some Brooklyn neighborhoods with large Jewish populations after possibly anti-Semitic attacks during the Hanukkah holiday, Mayor Bill de Blasio said after the latest incidents on Friday.

As many as 8 anti-Semitic incidents were being investigated.

"Since December 13 we've noticed eight hate crimes that are alarming to us. We are investigating them thoroughly with our hate crimes task force," Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison said. "We treat them very seriously and we make sure that our investigators do their best to do what we can to bring the individuals to justice."

In the most recent incidents, a man wearing a hoodie apparently walked into Lubavitch World Headquarters on Eastern Parkway in Crown Heights at 7 a.m. Friday and stated he was going to shoot up the place. The man then walked away, in the direction of the Utica Avenue subway station.

Earlier Friday, a group of three women reported being harassed and slapped on Kingston Avenue in Crown Heights. A 30-year-old woman was arrested.

Tiffany Harris, 30, was arrested on a hate-crime harassment charge.

Besides making officers more visible in Borough Park, Crown Heights and Williamsburg, police will boost visits to houses of worship and some other places, the mayor tweeted.

"Anti-Semitism is an attack on the values of our city - and we will confront it head-on," he wrote.

Mayor de Blasio met with leadership at Chabad Lubavitch World Headquarters on Friday afternoon.

Anti-Semitic crimes have been on the increase since mid-December, officials said.

A Jewish mother was hit in the head while walking with her son in Brooklyn on Thursday afternoon.

The hateful act against the mother happened in the quiet area of West 6th Street and Avenue S in the Gravesend section.

Police say the 42-year-old female suspect shouted an anti-Semitic slur and then beat the woman with her bag.

The NYPD released new surveillance video of a man wanted in a different attack on Kingston Avenue Tuesday in Crown Heights.
On Monday, a Miami man was charged with hate-crime assault after police said he made an anti-Semitic remark and attacked a man in midtown Manhattan. The 65-year-old victim was punched and kicked, suffering cuts, police said.

He had been wearing a yarmulke, according to former state Assemblyman Dov Hikind, who has founded a group dedicated to combating anti-Semitism.

Steven Jorge, 28, is being held without bail, and a judge ordered a psychiatric exam for him, court records show.

All this followed the tragic murders earlier this month inside a Jersey City kosher supermarket.

"The overall Jewish community was reeling from what happened in Jersey City. Now to have to deal with this during the holiday season-during Hanukkah is so difficult," said Evan Bernstein, of the Anti-Defamation League. "I've already been in contact with a lot of Jewish leaders in the region and they're telling me just how fearful their constituents and congregants are."

Governor Andrew Cuomo calling for a hate crime investigation and Mayor Bill de Blasio is also calling for an end to the violence after the rash of incidents.

Eyewitness News has found there has been a 53% increase in anti-Semitic hate crimes in New York City this year compared to the same time last year.

If anyone has any information about any of these or other incicdents, they are asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS.

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