A Rego Park woman was charged last Friday with a hate crime for a Nov. 6 assault during which she allegedly grabbed a woman’s hijab and yelled “f------ Muslim” at her, according to the district attorney.
Giselle DeJesus, 35, and an unapprehended man allegedly approached a Muslim couple, Khaled Aly and Neamat Taha, and their two children in the rear parking area of their apartment building on Woodhaven Boulevard, where both the family and the defendant live.
According to a criminal complaint, Aly placed his arm between his wife and the defendant and asked them to leave his family alone. The unapprehended man pushed his hands into the Aly’s face and chest, causing him to fall to the ground.
While Aly was on the ground, DeJesus allegedly kicked him multiple times in the stomach and shouted obscenities, while the unapprehended male kicked him in his head and face and threatened to kill the entire family.
Aly was later taken to a hospital for multiple and extensive fractures to his nose and face, for which he had to undergo surgery.
According to the charges, DeJesus had harassed the woman and her children in the parking area in late September.
DeJesus was arraigned last Friday before Queens Criminal Court Judge Mary Bejarano on a complaint charging her with assault in the second degree as a hate crime, three counts of aggravated harassment in the second degree, four counts of endangering the welfare of a child and one count of disorderly conduct. If convicted, DeJesus faces up to 15 years in prison.
CAIR-NY, a Muslim civil rights organization, called on the NYPD to investigate the attack as a hate crime.
“We are grateful that one of the suspects has been taken into custody — and appropriately charged with a hate crime,” CAIR-NY legal director Ahmed Mohamed said in a statement last Friday. “We are hopeful that the male suspect will soon be arrested and charged so that the family can feel safe again. No individual should ever be targeted in a manner such as this.”
Last Sunday at Borough Hall, elected officials and community leaders rallied to denounce the attack.
“An attack on one of us is an attack on all of us,” Assemblyman David Weprin (D- Fresh Meadows) tweeted. “#Queens is no place for hate.”