††††††††††††††††††† †††† Middlesex County Prosecutorís Office

††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††† 25 Kirkpatrick Street, 3rd Floor, New Brunswick, New Jersey, 08901 (732) 745-3300

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††† *News Release* ††† ††††††Date: January 26, 2010

 

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Teenager convicted of bias attack

 

 

††††††††† Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce J. Kaplan announced that a 17-year-old Edison male was adjudicated delinquent today for punching a township man in a bias-related incident.

 

Superior Court Judge Roger W. Daley ruled the 17 year old, M.K., was delinquent in the third degree aggravated assault and second degree bias intimidation of the victim, a 19-year-old Edison man.

 

Following a closed, one-day trial at the Family Courthouse in New Brunswick on January 20, 2010, the judge ruled today that the assault was a bias-related incident that was initiated because of the manís religion.

 

The judge placed the juvenile on probation for one year and ordered him to repay the man $630 to compensate him for medical co-payments, broken eye glasses and the cost of cleaning the religious garb he was wearing when he was punched and knocked to the ground.

 

In addition, the judge ordered the juvenile to write a 500-word essay on the effects of anti-Semitism.

 

During the trial, Middlesex County Assistant Prosecutor Ralph Cretella presented evidence and testimony showing that the defendant, who was 16 years old at the time of the attack on September 19, 2009, punched the man because of his religious beliefs.

 

The juvenile initially was arrested and charged after the township man, who is Jewish, told police he was punched at 7:25 p.m. while walking on Woodbridge Avenue, near Route 1.

 

The Edison Police Department subsequently filed a bias incident report with the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General, in accordance with state guidelines.

 

The defendant initially was charged with juvenile delinquency in the aggravated assault of the 19-year-old man, and the bias intimidation count was filed October 2, 2009, following an investigation by Sgt. John Rodriguez of the prosecutorís Bias Crimes Unit.