In a disturbing incident that took place this past Shabbos, an elderly couple in their 70s became victims of an unprovoked attack while they were on their way to shul.
Raphy and Rivka Nissel were walking to the Young Israel of North Beverly Hills (Beverly Hills Synagogue) when the assailant confronted them on Rexford Drive, near Santa Monica Boulevard. He yelled at Rivka, “Jew, give me your jewelry!” and then hit Raphy on the head several times with his belt buckle, cutting open a wound that needed 6 stitches.
Both victims shouted for assistance, alerting a nearby Beverly Hills police officer. The perp ran off, but police caught him several minutes later.
Despite his injuries, Raphy Nissel went to shul and served as the baal korei during leining, as he does each week.
Alan Tzivka Nissel, the son of the couple, reported the harrowing experience through a post on X.
According to Nissel’s post, his parents were suddenly and viciously attacked from behind by an assailant wielding a belt. The attacker reportedly singled out the couple for being Jewish. Nissel describes how his 75-year-old father and 70-year-old mother were struck on the head with a belt in what appears to be a clear act of antisemitism.
Despite the shock and pain of the assault, Ni’s father managed to recompose himself and, with the assistance of the Beverly Hills Police Department, successfully apprehended the perpetrator.
Here is #antisemitism vignette you won’t read about in papers. Yesterday, on way to shul, my father (75) and mother (70) were attacked. After being struck from behind on head by belt and called out as Jew, my father recomposed himself and successfully chased down perp with help… pic.twitter.com/p8ibGwpdxp
— Alan Tzvika Nissel (@atnissel) December 10, 2023
The suspect was identified as Jarris Silagi, a career criminal who’s been in and out of jail for years. He has been charged with a hate crime over the attack.
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