Suspect arrested in attack on Jewish man in Times Square during protests

A second man suspected of attacking a Jewish man in New York's Times Square last week was arrested Monday, police announced.

Faisal Elezzi, 25, of Staten Island, is charged with assault as a hate crime, menacing as a hate crime and aggravated harassment as a hate crime, the New York City Police Department said.

Elezzi is one of five men suspected of assaulting Joseph Borgen, 29, while making antisemitic statements during rival pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian protests in Midtown on Thursday, according to the NYPD.

Borgen, who was wearing a yarmulke, was knocked to the ground, punched, kicked, pepper-sprayed and hit with crutches during the assault, which was caught on bystander video.

He told NBC New York that he hadn't even made it to the protest when he was attacked. He had only just exited a subway station.

"They proceeded to assault me, beat me, kick me, punch me hit me with crutches, hit me with flag poles," Borgen said.

⚠️One of these individuals has been arrested and charged with Assault as a Hate Crime.
Take a look at the other 3, do you know any of them?
☎️ 1-800-577-TIPS with any information.

— NYPD Hate Crimes (@NYPDHateCrimes) May 24, 2021

Waseem Awawdeh, 23, was arrested shortly after the attack, police said Friday while releasing photos of the remaining four suspects.

It's unclear if Awawdeh or Elezzi have attorneys.

Thursday's protests near Times Square led to 26 arrests in all. Other videos from the demonstrations showed people scattering as a firework exploded. A 55-year-old was burned on her back, police said.

The weekend brought an additional attack on Jewish teenagers in Brooklyn by three men also accused of yelling antisemitic statements to four men standing outside a synagogue before damaging a car outside.

The incidents come as an apparent uptick of antisemitic vandalism and incidents across the country has been reported to police and shared on social media as deadly fighting between Israelis and Palestinians escalated over the past two weeks in the Middle East.

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