WATCH: Children set Jewish school bus ablaze in possible hate crime

2016-05-11 14:05

New York - Police on Tuesday were looking for five youths seen on video torching a Jewish school bus in a neighborhood marred by race riots in the 1990s.

An 11-year-old boy already was arrested and charged as a juvenile with arson and criminal mischief in the Sunday evening blaze, which was being investigated as a possible hate crime. Surveillance video shows a group of boys running off the bus as it catches on fire, police said.

The bus belonged to the Bnos Chomesh Academy, a girls' high school in Brooklyn's Crown Heights neighborhood, where tensions between the Jewish and black communities living side by side spurred riots in 1991.

Police Chief of Detectives Robert Boyce said a group of six youths took flat cardboard boxes on the unlocked bus and set them on fire on the seats.

"It was purposefully done with prior planning," Boyce said. "Clearly this was a religious school bus. Anyone in the community knows that."

Community tension

It was the third incident being investigated by police as a possible hate crime during the past week in the neighbourhood. On Friday, a bus driver for a different Jewish school said his side mirror was pelted with a brick and smashed by someone.

The day before, a man dressed in religious Jewish clothing said he was harassed by a 13-year-old boy who shot rubber bands at him, police said.

The man said he ran after and caught the boy, who punched him the face. Police said the man held the boy until they arrived. The boy was arrested on an assault charge and was being treated as a juvenile.

In the bus fire and in the assault, the suspects are black. The bus driver whose window was smashed said he didn't see the attacker.

Boyce said the incidents in Crown Heights are "troubling."

"We're hoping to get out in front of it and make these arrests and close these things out," he said.

In 1991, riots began after a 7-year-old black boy, Gavin Cato, was struck and killed by a driver belonging to the ultra-Orthodox Lubavitch community. Hours later, a group of blacks shouting "Get the Jew!" fatally stabbed Yankel Rosenbaum, who was visiting from Australia.

Read more on:    us

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.