By Elizabeth Elizalde
Two men allegedly shouted an anti-Arab slur at a man outside a Brooklyn mosque, and police are investigating the altercation as a possible hate crime, officials said Friday.
The 23-year-old victim was apparently leaning on a vehicle near the Islamic Society of Bay Ridge on Fifth Avenue near 68th Street at about 5:40pm, Wednesday, when two men approached him, an NYPD spokesperson said.
One man stated, “What are you doing on my car, m—–f—–?,” according to police sources. He then yelled, “You f—— Arab,” sources said.
When the victim apologized, the man said, “There is no sorry,” as the suspect grabbed the victim’s shirt, police said.
The second suspect then pulled out a knife, and the victim tried to run away, police said. The victim eventually got away, and ran across the street as the suspects chased after him with a baton they grabbed from their vehicle, police said.
A witness then intervened, and the suspects fled, police sources said. Police couldn’t confirm if the victim had relations to the mosque.
Police described both suspects as two white men at 5-foot-10, the first, a 26-year old with short brown hair, and the second, a 23-year-old with blonde hair. Police are still searching for the suspects and the investigation of a “bias” crime is still ongoing, officials said.
This incident comes on the heels of another mosque attack in Sunset Park, in which two teen boys were beaten on Ramadan outside Mabine Muslim Community Center after allegedly approaching and exchanging words with the attacker’s girlfriend. The suspect in the Sunset Park attack surrendered to police last week.