from the Daily News: Jewish teen on mend as parents want hate crime charges
A Jewish teen whose vicious beating on a Crown Heights street prompted demonstrations outside a police precinct stationhouse was recovering at home Saturday.
His mouth wired shut from the pummeling he allegedly suffered at the hands of two black teens early Friday, 16-year-old Alon Sherman could only shrug when asked if he believes the assault was a bias crime.
His mother felt certain that the beating - which occurred as Alon rode his bicycle to buy formula for his baby brother - was more than a robbery. "You can steal a bike anywhere, but why isn't it happening anywhere else?" asked Iris Sherman. "It wasn't just about a bike."
Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly stopped short of classifying the assault as a hate crime. "It's too early to label it as a bias crime," Kelly said.
Alon does not remember the attack, which fractured his jaw and gave him a concussion. No arrests have been made, but a witness told cops that he saw two black teens stealing Alon's bike.
As Alon sipped punch from a straw, his parents expressed sadness about the brutality of the crime, which they said made their younger children too frightened to sleep alone. "Hate is a term Hitler used to destroy a person's dignity, and that is what they did," said Alon's father, Howard Sherman.About 200 members of the area's Orthodox Jewish community protested outside the 71st Precinct stationhouse on Friday, insisting the attack was racially motivated. They observed the Sabbath Saturday and did not demonstrate again.