Brooklyn Trio Faces Hate Crime Charges Following Harassment Outside Synagogue

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Three Brooklyn men have been arrested in connection with antisemitic harassment in Brooklyn over the weekend.

Police say 20-year-old Daniel Shaukat, 20-year-old Haider Anjam and 19-year-old Ashan Azad were at least three three suspects who hopped out of a blue Toyota Camry outside Agudath Israel on Saturday night and made antisemitic statements toward four Jewish men who were observing Sabbath. The trio then allegedly banged on the synagogue's door, kicked the mirror on a parked car outside, then got back into the Camry and drove off.

“Earlier today Orthodox Jews were harassed in front of this Shul on 16th Avenue by a group of males yelling ‘Free Palestine - kill all the Jews,’” Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein tweeted on Saturday.

Police said roughly 45 minutes later, the same group was suspected of attacking two Jewish teenagers.

The men allegedly made antisemitic statements, punched the victims and then chased them with a baseball bat. One of the attackers put a 17-year-old victim in a chokehold, according to police.

Shaukat, Anjam and Azad were charged Tuesday with aggravated harassment as a hate crime. Both Anjam and Azad also face harassment charges, which Anjam has a third charge of menacing as a hate crime.

The NYPD is promising to beef up policing in Orthodox neighborhoods after a string of antisemitic attacks. NBC New York's Ida Siegal reports.

The incidents were a few of numerous antisemitic hate crimes in New York City since violence escalated in Israel and Palestine earlier this month. While a cease-fire has been called in the Middle East, the NYPD said it stepped police presence in Jewish neighborhoods due to increased hate crime reports.

Mayor Bill de Blasio addressed the attacks during his Monday morning press conference, saying that the violence is "absolutely unacceptable."

“[I've] talked with members of the Jewish community who have felt hurt every way," he said. "It goes against everything New York City is about and we won't tolerate it."

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has pledged the support of the state police to respond to the rising incidents of hate.

"In the wake of the unacceptable recent increase in anti-Semitic hate crimes nationwide, I am proactively deploying State Troopers to provide security at Jewish religious, educational, and community facilities," Cuomo said Monday.

In other recent alleged antisemitic incidents in the city, one of the suspects wanted for a gang-style assault of a Jewish man in Times Square last week was been arrested on Monday, according to police.

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