October 15, 2019

NY Chasidic Man Assaulted with a Brick

Photo from Flickr.

A 63-year-old Chasidic Jewish man was assaulted with a brick in the Crown Heights area of New York City on Aug. 27.

The man, identified as Avraham Gopin, was walking through Lincoln Terrace Park when an unidentified man started yelling at him and then threw a brick at Gopin’s head. Gopin punched back and a struggle ensued; the assailant eventually fled.

According to Gopin’s son-in-law, Chasidic vocalist Benny Friedman, Gopin had his front teeth knocked out and his nose broken, as well as myriad lacerations throughout his body. 

Rabbi Getzy Markowitz, who is also Gopin’s son-in-law, told COLLive that if Gopin “had not fought off the attacker, there would possibly have been, G-d forbid, a different outcome. The attacker was clearly trying to kill him – just an innocent man walking in the park.”

Markowitz added that Gopin “is a visibly Chasidic Jew. He is a known person in the community, and well-liked by all. He gets along with all his neighbors – both Jews and non-Jews – who are all very fond of him.”

The New York Police Department (NYPD) is currently investigating the matter has video footage of the incident, according to the Jerusalem Post.

The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) is offering an award of up to $5,000 for information on the assailant.

We are alarmed and deeply concerned by this violent assault on an elderly Jewish man,” ADL New York and New Jersey Regional Director Evan R. Bernstein said in a statement. “The sheer brutally of this attack is beyond shocking and profoundly upsetting. At a time when violent assaults against Jews increased by 55% last year, we must not become complacent. All New Yorkers should be outraged by these incidents and come together to end this disturbing trend once and for all. We are grateful for the NYPD Hate Crime Unit for investigating.”