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NYPD reports 45 antisemitic incidents last month, 57% of all hate crimes in the city

The legal standard for proving bias is high, making prosecution difficult

The NYPD reported 45 anti-Jewish hate crimes across the city in June as the increase in antisemitism continues more than eight months after Hamas’ Oct. 7 invasion of Israel.

The total for June was more than double the tally during the same month last year, when there were 19 antisemitic incidents reported to police. Jews were targeted in 57% of all hate crimes reported to the NYPD last month.

Hate incidents against Jews spiked after the Oct. 7 invasion of Israel, with 69 in October and 62 in November. 

The number has fluctuated since then, from 17 reported incidents in February to 43 in March and 32 in April. Last month’s total was a decrease from May, when there were 55 antisemitic incidents, the highest total in six months. Jews remain the group most targeted in hate crimes nearly every month. 

Jewish security officials have said the pattern of anti-Israel protests in the city may play a role in the fluctuations. According to the mayor’s office, there have been more than 1,000 protests in the city related to Israel since Oct. 7. 

There were 79 total hate crimes reported to police last month, including 17 based on sexual orientation, three motivated by anti-Asian animus, two targeting Black people, four against other ethnicities, three against the Hispanic community, three motivated by Islamophobia, and two against other religions.

The figures represent preliminary police data and are subject to change if, for example, an investigation finds that an altercation that had appeared discriminatory was not actually motivated by bigotry.

Not every reported hate crime results in an arrest or prosecution, and numbers can be revised following the initial tally. The legal standard for proving bias is high, making prosecution difficult.

Jewish security officials have said the prevalence of face masks among anti-Israel activists has made prosecuting some cases difficult. New York legislators are moving to advance legislation that would bar wearing masks at public gatherings in order to tamp down on hate incidents. 

Several post-Oct. 7 incidents are being pursued by prosecutors, including one in which a suspect allegedly punched a Jewish Israeli near Times Square while shouting antisemitic epithets. In another incident, in April, a man was charged with a slew of hate crimes after aiming his car at Orthodox Jews in Brooklyn.

Other prominent cases surrounding the Israel-Hamas war are being prosecuted, but not as hate crimes, or have been resolved. 

Last month, the NYPD arrested an anti-Israel protester who allegedly threatened “Zionists” on a subway car, charging the defendant with coercion. Also last month, prosecutors moved to dismiss hate crimes charges against a woman charged with attacking an Israeli student on Columbia University’s campus following Oct. 7.

This article originally appeared on JTA.org.

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