The 21-year-old Manhattan man who targeted and snatched the purses of Asian women in Bensonhurst and Boro Park has been sentenced to 12 years in prison. He plead guilty to robbery as a hate crime late last month.
“Today’s sentence shows that hate crimes such as these, which are based on a person’s race, gender, sexual identity or ethnicity, will not be tolerated in Brooklyn,” Acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez said in a statement, “The defendant specifically targeted Chinese women walking alone because he thought he could overpower them and escape prosecution. He’s now been held accountable.”
According to the investigation, on April 6, 2016 just after midnight near 55th Street and Fort Hamilton Parkway
…a 23-year-old woman of Chinese descent was walking alone when the defendant approached her from behind and repeatedly pulled on her purse, causing her to fall to the ground. He then stood over her and stated: “Give me all of your money.”
A bystander saw Israel with his arm around the victim’s neck in an apparent struggle and called 911. Police immediately responded to the scene and apprehended Israel about 20 minutes later, six blocks from the scene.
Israel admitted to committing five other similar robberies of Chinese women aged 21 to 43 in 2016, all near Fort Hamilton Parkway between 55th and 71st Streets. Three of Israel’s victims suffered injuries including lacerations and bruising.