The Queens couple charged with a hate crime for allegedly attacking a bunch of Hasidic Jews in Brooklyn for not training social-distancing is just not anti-Semitic, and had been solely “speaking out about what they saw,” based on their lawyer.
Grocery delivers Paulo Pinho, 35, and his spouse, Clelia Pinho, 46, had been arrested late Sunday on a cost of aggravated harassment as a hate crime after a confrontation with a big group of Hasidic Jews gathered outdoors Bedford Avenue and Ross Street in Williamsburg, police mentioned.
The pair hopped out of their automotive and commenced to shout “anti-Semitic statements” to the group earlier than Paulo Pinho approached three Hasidic males and tried to tear off their masks, accusing them of being the explanation why individuals had been contracting the coronavirus, police mentioned.
“After making the statements, that’s when the masks were pulled off,” mentioned NYPD Lt. Thomas Antonetti.
But an attorney for the couple claims they had been victimized for “taking an irresponsible mass of individuals to task” for not carrying masks or training social distancing.
They additionally “actively deny” making anti-Semitic assertion to the group of about 100, attorney Ken Belkin mentioned in an announcement. “My clients abhor racism and anti-Semitism in all of their forms.”
“This incensed the crowd and tempers flared,” Belkin continued. “My clients were the ones who called the NYPD and they did so out of fear for their lives. The crowd then attacked my clients and they were treated for their injuries at Woodhull Hospital.”
The male victims, not less than certainly one of whom was carrying conventional Hasidic garb, refused medical consideration on the scene, police mentioned.
Once on the hospital, medical doctors handled Clelia Pinho for a damaged arm, Belkin mentioned.
The pair, who had been issued a desk look ticket, are due in courtroom on Sept. 8. If convicted, they resist one 12 months in jail, Belkin mentioned.