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Saturday, November 23, 2013

Orthodox Jewish man in Brooklyn claims to be 'knockout' victim

NEW YORK (WABC) - A 28-year old man is under arrest, accused of attacking an Orthodox Jewish man in Brooklyn who claims he is the latest victim of the so-called 'knockout' game.

The attack happened around 2:30 a.m. Friday on 18th Avenue and East Second Street in Borough Park, and the suspect, 28-year old Amrit Marajh of Brooklyn, has been charged with harassment as a hate crime.

Members of the Orthodox community gathered outside the 66th Precinct, and said they are thrilled about the arrests.

The victim was apparently heading home from work when he was surrounded by a group of Hispanic males in their 20s.

He said he was punched in the face, but managed to escape serious injury and went to the local community Jewish police, who contacted the NYPD. The man says he overheard a group talking about the game before he was punched.

Officers rushed to the area and took four suspects into custody.

"The message that we need to send is that we're going to have zero tolerance," New York City Councilman David Greenfield said. "And that's why I called on the NYPD and District Attorney's Office to literally throw the book at these individuals and to charge them with many crimes, including hate crimes and gang assault, because that's what it is."

Police are still investigating whether this was a knockout game incident, but community members were still relieved by the arrest.

"I commend the excellent police work," Assemblyman Dov Hikind said. "I am grateful that these four thugs are off the streets and am hopeful that they will be treated with the severity of the law. I urge continuing diligence in dealing with this issue."

There have been eight other recent incidents that may fit the pattern of the game. No other arrests have been made.

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