Letitia James Issues a Warning about a ‘Dangerous’ Individual

New York Attorney General Letitia James issued a stern warning on Thursday, emphasizing that the state will not tolerate any acts of Islamophobia. This declaration comes after the police released photographs of an individual accused of forcefully removing a hijab from a teenage girl’s head towards the end of last month.

The New York City Police Department (NYPD) has released a statement to Newsweek, seeking help in identifying a man involved in an incident of “aggravated harassment” on April 28th at around noon.

According to the police, a man approached a 17-year-old girl and forcibly removed her hijab while shouting, “You don’t need to be wearing that here.” The incident occurred as the girl was walking towards 2nd Avenue on East 44th Street in East Midtown. Thankfully, no injuries were reported.

In response to a report by New York’s Daily News, James expressed her strong disapproval on X, formerly known as Twitter. She asserted that such hateful and dangerous behavior will not be tolerated in New York.

“We are committed to ensuring that acts of Islamophobia are not tolerated and that every New Yorker feels safe,” she emphasized. “If you have any information regarding this individual, please reach out to @NYPDnews without delay.”

If you have any information, please contact the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-8477 or submit a tip through their website, crimestoppers.nypdonline.org. Remember, all calls are strictly confidential.

Tensions over the Israel-Hamas war in New York City have escalated in recent weeks, as pro-Palestinian rallies have dominated the streets, college campuses, and even high-profile events like the Met Gala. Demonstrators are demanding a ceasefire in the conflict and urging institutions like Columbia University and New York University to distance themselves from Israel.

The police have responded to these demonstrations with a strong show of force, leading to numerous arrests. Unfortunately, there have also been reports of antisemitism at some protest locations. On the other hand, the student-led protests have largely remained peaceful. However, the NYPD has expressed concerns about the presence of “professional agitators” who may join the protests in an attempt to escalate the situation.

In a recent post on X, James expressed his disapproval of pro-Palestinian protesters congregating on college campuses. He emphasized that while students have the right to peacefully protest, he believes that acts of antisemitic violence go beyond acceptable boundaries.

From January 1 to March 31, there have been 81 reported incidents of bias towards Jewish people, according to the NYPD Hate Crimes Dashboard. This marks an increase from the previous year, where the figure stood at 61 incidents during the same time period.

During the first three months of 2024, New York City witnessed six reported incidents of bias towards Muslims, which is a notable increase compared to the two incidents reported during the same period last year.

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