(UnitedHeadlines.com) – A Jewish couple who was attacked Dec. 9 on their way to a synagogue in Beverly Hills, California, is recounting the attack and speaking out about the surge in antisemitism amid the war between Israel and Hamas.
On Dec. 12, Rebecca and Raphael Nissel spoke on “FOX & Friends First” about the attack that left Raphael’s shirt covered in blood. Raphael, who was wearing a yarmulke at the time of the attack, was allegedly lashed in the head with a belt buckle by the suspect. Before fleeing the scene, the suspect yelled at Rebecca, “Give me your earrings, Jew!”
The idea that they were targeted for their Jewish faith “enraged” Raphael, and he chased the suspect down the street. He attempted to get the suspect to run toward the civic center, where the police department is located. Rebecca then notified the police, who were nearby, and the suspect apprehended.
During the interview, Rebecca, 70, stated that she has never seen antisemitism “as bad as it is now,” adding that it has slowly deteriorated over the last couple of years.
Raphael, 75, stated that “much more could be done” to combat anti-Jewish hate, adding that colleges are “sending the wrong message” with the rhetoric in the classrooms. He said that it is a problem if people are allowed to “slur and openly curse and arrest Jewish people.” The couple stated that the attack has left them more determined than ever to wear their faith proudly.
Antisemitism has increased 388 percent since the Oct. 7 attack by Hamas, according to the Anti-Defamation League.
The suspect, Jarris Jay Silagi, 44, was arraigned Dec. 12. He is charged with one felony count each of assault with a deadly weapon, attempted second-degree robbery and elder abuse. He is also charged with a hate crime “enhancement” and two felony counts of assault by use of force that is “likely to produce great bodily injury,” according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office. He faces a maximum sentence of life in jail if convicted.
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