A Staten Island man has pleaded guilty to attempted assault as a hate crime and will spend two months in prison for the 2021 attack.
The defendant was accused of punching a Jewish man who was wearing a hoodie with the Israeli Defense Force emblem, according to the Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez’s office. The defendant was promised a sentence of 60 days in jail and three years’ probation in exchange for his guilty plea.
“Brooklyn’s diversity is our strength and we do not tolerate violence that’s motivated by bias against any religious or national identity," said Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez.
"The hateful and unprovoked assault this defendant admitted to today left one victim hurt, but also shook an entire community. His conviction, jailtime and probation should send a message that this kind of intolerance has serious consequences.”
The defendant has been identified as Suleiman Othman, 28, of Staten Island. He pleaded guilty yesterday, before Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun to attempted third-degree assault as a hate crime in exchange for a promised sentence of 60 days in jail followed by three years’ probation. The defendant is scheduled to be sentenced on September 20, 2023.
On December 26, 2021, according to the evidence, the victim, a 21-year-old Jewish man, was standing outside a Foot Locker on 86th Street in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, wearing a green hoodie with a yellow IDF emblem. The defendant approached him in the street and said: “Why do you support those dirty Jews? What are you doing in my neighborhood? You mess with the killers. If you don't take off your hoodie, I'm going to punch you.”
When the victim refused to remove his hoodie, the defendant punched him twice in the face and threw a cup of iced coffee on him. He was treated at the scene for a laceration and swelling to the face. The defendant fled and was identified after being captured on multiple surveillance cameras. He turned himself in to police on January 11, 2022.