Press Release


Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced that a 16-year-old male was charged today with assault as a hate crime for an attack in Flushing Meadows Corona Park during which the defendant is accused of yelling anti-Semitic slurs while he and others kicked a Jewish man after knocking him to the ground.

District Attorney Katz said: “We respect the diversity of our Borough and affronts to that, especially violent ones, will not be tolerated. The defendant is being charged with not only the robbery, but for the assault as a hate crime for this cowardly, alleged anti-Semitic attack.”

The defendant, of 104th Street in Corona, was arraigned on a 17-count complaint charging him with assault in the second degree as a hate crime; assault in the second degree; assault in the third degree as a hate crime; assault in the third degree; two counts of robbery in the second degree; three counts of grand larceny in the fourth degree; two counts of criminal possession of stolen property in the fourth and fifth degree; criminal mischief in the fourth degree; petit larceny; identity theft in the third degree; and unlawful possession of personal identification information in the third degree.

According to the charges:

On Sunday, February 19, Sam Levy, 48, was walking along the Roundabout in Flushing Meadows Corona Park at approximately 8:25 p.m. when he observed the defendant and approximately five others. The defendant and one of the others separated from the group and positioned themselves at opposite ends of the Roundabout, forcing Levy to have to pass either one of them to exit the Roundabout.

As Levy continued walking, he sensed someone run towards him from behind. He turned and observed the defendant running toward him. Levy ran, but the defendant caught up to him and struck him in the back of the head, knocking him to the ground. The defendant and the approximately five others gathered around the prone Levy.

The defendant then kicked Levy on the left side of his face, breaking his glasses and causing bruising and swelling to his left eye.

As Levy attempted to get to his feet, he was dragged back down by the defendant and others who continued to kick him about the head, face, torso and legs and then demanded money. Levy reached into his pocket and took out approximately $200 and his wallet, which contained his identification and credit cards, and tossed them toward the defendant.

While some of the perpetrators continued kicking Levy, others collected the money and wallet and took his cell phone and his house and car keys from his pants pocket.

The defendant continued kicking Levy and yelled out, “___ Jew.”  The group continued kicking Levy and then fled the location.

Levy was transported to a local hospital. As a result of the attack, he sustained bruised ribs, bruising and swelling to his left eye and experienced substantial pain to his torso, back and head.

According to the complaint against the defendant, security camera video footage from a Burger King near the park shows the defendant, two other males and a female approximately three hours after the attack at a kiosk using what appear to be credit or bank cards. It has been determined that the cards belonged to Levy.

Assistant District Attorney Michael Brovner, Bureau Chief of the District Attorney’s Hate Crimes Bureau, is prosecuting the case under the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney for the Supreme Court Trials Division Pishoy B. Yacoub.

**Criminal complaints and indictments are accusations. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.