Man arrested on hate crime assault charges following brutal Brooklyn beating

October 15, 2018 - 8:16 am

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- A suspect was arrested Sunday on hate crime assault charges after allegedly attacking a Jewish man in Brooklyn.

Authorities say the attack happened at around 7:30 a.m. in Borough Park near 46th Street and 13th Avenue.

The victim, 62-year-old Leopold Schwartz, suffered cuts and bruises to his head during the beating.

Surveillance videos show Farrukh Afzal, 37, of Staten Island, get out of his car and chase the older Jewish man, who was on his way to service at a local synagogue at the time.

“I was like this. And all of a sudden… boof, boof, boof, boof!” Schwartz told CBS2 News, referring to the barrage of punches that came his way. “So I start to fight back because it’s either death or life.”

Police said Afzal took down the elderly man in the middle of an intersection and began beating him. The assault only ended when another bystander stepped in to intervene.

“I’m telling you if he had a knife he would stab me right on the place. No doubt,” Schwartz explained.

Bystanders held the driver at the scene until police arrived and he could be arrested. It’s unclear what Afzal’s motive for the attack was.

Officials with Brooklyn’s Community Board 12 tweeted that they have already spoken with the NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force and met with the victim at a local hospital.

Afzal is facing charges of hate crime assault, mischief and harassment.