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Hasidic man’s family blames cops — not anti-Semites — for shooting

for The Brooklyn Paper
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The family of the Hasidic man who was shot in the stomach in front of his Williamsburg home on Tuesday are blaming a lack of police — not anti-Semitism — for the robbery attempt-turned-shooting. “I don’t want to make accusations, but we just need more police in the area,” said the victim’s mother, who requested that her name not be used.

Community members led by United Jewish Organization President Rabbi David Niederman also refused to play the race card, though the victim, 25-year-old Burech Halberstam, told police that his assailants were Hispanic.

Cops have revealed little about the early Tuesday morning on the corner of S. Ninth Street and Driggs Avenue. Halberstam was talking on his cellphone at around midnight when two men approached. The thugs tried to take his phone, then rummaged through his pockets before firing at him when they didn’t find any money.

Then the crime took an even more brutal twist. “After they shot him, they were laughing,” one witness said.

The trigger-happy perps drove their white getaway van down Driggs Avenue, but another witness drove after them, following them to Berry Street. The men waved a gun and the Samaritan circled back to the scene of the shooting. Police found the alleged getaway car on Jefferson Avenue near Franklin Avenue in Bedford-Stuyvesant about an hour after the crime. Meanwhile, Halberstam was taken to Manhattan’s Bellevue Hospital, where he was operated on and remains in stable condition. His family said he could be home as early as Wednesday.

“He lost a lot of blood, but he’s lucky the bullets didn’t hit any of his vital organs,” said his mother.

No arrest has been made in the case, leaving Halberstam’s mother spooked. “I was born here, but felt less safe over the years,” she said. “I even tell my son to call me when he gets home from visiting me at my house.”

Police from the 90th Precinct, which comprises the Southside and Bushwick, could not be reached for comment, but NYPD statistics do not suggest that the area has gotten lawless.

So far this year, there has been one murder in the entire precinct, down from four by this point last year. Assaults are down, but robberies are up — though neither by statistically significant amounts.

And, historically, crime is a tiny fraction of what it was when Halberstam’s mother was raising her wounded son.

In 1990, there were 24 murders recorded in the precinct.

Updated 5:19 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Moshe aron Kestenbaum from Williamsburg ODA says:
The penalty for commiting a crime with a gun should be a strong deterent . If these criminals would get life imprisonment without the possibility of parole. ... No time off for good behavior. No chance of release by a parole board, ever. ... life without parole would be a good and effective a deterrent to such a crime.. You would hear less crimes like this then .
Aug. 12, 2010, 7:01 am
Moshe aron kestenbaum from Williamsburg ODA says:
Hey alex dont put a brand on the man . He aint no satmar guy he is just a g-d fearing jew. I know the guy he belongs to no one brand.
Aug. 12, 2010, 7:04 am
BFD says:
So a Hasidic guy gets shot during a robbery. What is the big deal about that? Welcome to NYC. If it would have happened in the same manner in East NY to a black guy, no one would blink an eye. Is the author suggesting that the victim in this case was targeted because he was Hasidic? If that is the case, just say so. Don't ——foot around it. Being a Hasid does not make you bulletproof. Vigilance has no race, color, creed or religion...everyone should watch their backs.
Aug. 12, 2010, 8:15 am
John from Williamsburg says:
ALex Rush writes "So far this year, there has been one murder in the entire precinct, down from four by this point last year. Assaults are down, but robberies are up — though neither by statistically significant amounts."
What a shame that reporters go by police statistics which are @ best not accurate. As a Williamsburg resident I can say that drugs and robberies have doubled since Giuliany left office.
Shame on Bloomberg for using cops to increasing ticket revenue instead of fighting crime!
Shame on u!
Aug. 12, 2010, 10:50 am
BFD says:
"What a shame that reporters go by police statistics which are @ best not accurate. As a Williamsburg resident I can say that drugs and robberies have doubled since Giuliany left office."

John do you have a crystal ball or something. How the hell do know that? How? Are you walking the streets taking reports too? You are not in a position to tout any statistics. You are entitled to your opinions, but not the facts.
Aug. 12, 2010, 11:44 am
Nead Digger from Holkum says:
TJB nhi
Aug. 12, 2010, 2:11 pm
Friendo from Greenpoint says:
John From Williamsburg knows what he's talking about. The police exist to serve us with ticket quotas. Cops in Greenpoint, Williamsburg, East Williamsburg, Bushwick, and Bed-Stuy are instructed to keep statistics down, to keep property prices going up, and keep precincts looking good on paper. They do this by discouraging people who come by the station to report petty crime/theft and by downgrading the crimes they do report. Grand theft auto becomes petty larceny, aggravated assault becomes mere harassment, etc. I went in there to report some stolen property worth less than $500 and they were all like, "Do you really want to do this, really?" They were aggressively discouraging me from filing the report. BFD: Are you a police Sargent or something? (kidding, you're so obviously in real estate)
Aug. 14, 2010, 9:47 am
John from Williamsburg says:
BFD,
I have no crystal ball. I did have an expensive object stolen from my proprty and the cops have LOST the police report.
Ask people from the neighborhood. Crime wasn't so bad since before the rudy Giuliany years. Period.
No crystal Balls needed
Aug. 16, 2010, 12:11 pm
BFD says:
John:

Complete rubbish. "Ask people from the neighborhood...". That is really statistically sound.

I am from the Southside (born and raised), I remember the "good old bad days". It is not like that anymore. Maybe the color of the skin of your "neighbors" makes you so fearful.

When you come across bad cops or a f'd up system complain about to someone who cares. Call and complain to 311. Doing it here will not get you anywhere and will not hold those people responsible.

-BFD

Aug. 16, 2010, 3:13 pm

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