‘I would do it again’: Suspect accused of pummeling NYC Jewish man shows no remorseMay 23, 2021
The Brooklyn man accused of beating a Jewish man in a hate attack in Midtown proclaimed from his jail cell that he would “do it again,” prosecutors said on Saturday.
Waseem Awawdeh, 23, was held on $10,000 bail in the Thursday attack, in which he is accused of beating Joseph Borgen, 29, with crutches and punching, kicking and pepper-spraying him.
“If I could do it again, I would do it again,” he told one of his jailers, according to a prosecutor at Awawdeh’s Saturday arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court. “I have no problem doing it again.”
The attack was unprovoked, said prosecutors, who told Judge Kathryn Paek that Borgen was walking near Broadway and West 49th Street when Awawdeh “jumped him and attacked him.”
Awawdeh, who has at least one open case in Brooklyn for allegedly speeding and running a red light in March, was charged with assault as a hate crime, gang assault, menacing, aggravated harassment as a hate crime and criminal possession of a weapon, police said.
The Midtown attack was a hate crime, the Manhattan assistant district attorney told Paek, adding Awawdeh called Borgen a “dirty Jew” and said, “F–k Israel, Hamas is going to kill all of you.”
Awawdeh is enrolled in college and isn’t a flight risk, said his attorney, April White-Small of New York County Defenders. Awawdeh did not enter a plea.
Friends of Awawdeh’s who refused to give their names claimed Awawdeh was attacked first.
“They picked somebody that was weak, that was on crutches,” one claimed to The Post.
Meanwhile, the NYPD released photos of four other men who are wanted in connection with Thursday’s attack on Borgen.
“I felt a liquid being poured on my face, and at first I thought I was getting urinated on,” Borgen, an accountant who lives on the Upper East Side, told The Post.
“But it turned out I was getting Maced and pepper-sprayed. My face was on fire. That pain was worse than the concussion and all this other stuff that followed.”
“I have a concussion,” Borgen said. “I had an X-ray on my wrist. It’s not broken, but it’s messed up. Every time I move it, it’s in pain, probably sprained. I have bruises all over my body. I have a black eye. My face is banged up. I’m just sore all over my body. They were kicking me in my ribs, my stomach.”
He said the attack had made him rethink wearing his yarmulke in public in the future.
Anyone with information on the four other suspects in the Midtown assault is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS or go to the Crime Stoppers Web site.
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