An Ohio man was convicted Monday of a hate crime after attacking a man he thought was Jewish while allegedly shouting “I want to kill all of the Jews,” Buzzfeed News reported.
The verdict related to an incident in February 2017, when Izmir Koch began shouting in Russian, asking if anyone else outside a Cincinnati restaurant was Jewish. When a Lithuanian man who also spoke Russia pointed to himself, Koch allegedly went over to attack him, according to court documents.
Koch punched the man in the back of the head, knocked him down and kicked him, according to Buzzfeed. His friends allegedly joined in, and the man was left with a broken bone in his face and bruised ribs.
Koch initially denied being part of the fight, so he was also convicted of lying to the FBI in addition to committing a hate crime.
The man who Koch attacked actually turned out not to be Jewish, but authorities said it was clear that Koch thought he was.
Although the victim (who had mutual friends with Koch) ended up withdrawing his police report after the incident, citing that “everybody had been drinking,” Judge Susan Dlott called it an obvious hate crime.
“Koch used an offensive slang term to describe Jewish people, announced his desire to ‘cut’ or ‘slaughter’ Jews, and then immediately attacked the lone man who identified himself as Jewish, causing him bodily injury,” Dlott wrote.
Koch is scheduled to be sentenced in May.