BROOKLYN, N.Y. (PIX11) — On Saturday, four men attacked a Brooklyn convenience store owner violently in what is now being investigated by authorities as a probable act of bias-motivated violence, according to the police.
The New York City Police Department reports that at approximately 2:20 p.m., four suspects entered the Mermaid Avenue Deli and Grill located at 1716 Mermaid Avenue and confronted the 58-year-old store owner Jamal Sawaid.
Sawaid was subjected to a vicious beating as, according to the police, the four accused hurled racial obscenities at him during the assault.
According to the police, one of the assailants was armed with a metal pipe during the assault on the victim, during which the gang struck the victim in the face and head before fleeing in a white pickup truck.
The person was taken to a hospital in what authorities described as a stable condition by the first responders who arrived on the scene.
Dr. Debbie Almonstaser, who works for the Yemeni American Merchants Association, issued a statement in which she said that “this terrible incident is further proof of how urgently we need our elected officials to take action, and pass laws that will deliver real protection for bodega owners and other small business owners who are continuously subjected to threats and violence every single day.”
“We call on local and state elected officials to pass legislation to protect our merchants and to help put an end to these heinous attacks that continue to plague our community,” the statement read.
“We call on them to help put an end to these horrible attacks that continue to plague our community.”
The New York Police Department’s Hate Crimes Task Force is now conducting an investigation, but no arrests have been made at this time.