Monsey Cops Seek Help To End Attacks On Day Laborers, Frum Yidden


monseySpring Valley, NY -The village’s day laborers and ultra-Orthodox Jews are both being targeted by organized criminals, forcing the police to beef up night patrols for each community and meet with leaders to urge their followers to take better safety precautions.

During the past 10 days, six day laborers have been beaten and robbed late at night into the early morning hours off Main Street. The robbery gang members either wait in the dark along desolate roads and along the train tracks or trail the men after they leave local bars or restaurants and then strike.

One man suffered a fractured skull and his brother suffered serious head injuries. They remain hospitalized.

Blocks away in the Orthodox Jewish Blueberry Hill neighborhood, nine homes have been burglarized after midnight while people slept. The suspected two-man gang has entered through unlocked doors or open windows, grabbing purses, cellphones, jewelry, possibly silver utensils or what they can get.

The crew hit four houses on Dorset Road and Widman Court on Friday morning, after break-ins to homes on Morris, Charles and other blocks.

Both communities are living in fear.

“I feel violated,” Shavy Kahan said. “I feel vulnerable. I don’t feel safe.”

The Kahan family’s home on Dorset Road has been broken into twice.

Kahan, a mother of four children, said her neighbors are buying burglar alarm and surveillance systems. She said she feels a bit safer knowing the police are putting out extra patrols, but she can’t get over feeling “terrified” that something worse could happen when she and her family are sleeping.

Day laborers have long been targets of street robbers, because they carry cash earned from working in construction, landscaping and restaurants, or are viewed as easy marks walking alone and possibly drunk. Most of the workers are living in the United States illegally and fear the authorities, and thus don’t report being crime victims.

“It’s a dangerous situation right now on the streets of Spring Valley,” said Juan Pablo Ramirez, an advocate for immigrants with Latinos for Peace and Justice and the Rockland Immigration Coalition. He also is with Jornaleros Project, which provides services for immigrants.

“We have one young man, 23 years old, still in a coma after a savage beating,” Ramirez said. “These people could easily have been killed. This goes beyond robberies.”

Ramirez said he, Jeremiah Cortave of the Rockland Latino Pastors Association and Guatemalan general counsel walked the streets Friday, talking to workers about only walking in lit areas, staying off the dangerous railroad tracks and walking in groups.

They also spoke with Spring Detective Sgt. James Noble, who oversees the detective bureau looking into the burglaries and the robberies.

Noble said he and other officers spent Friday talking with rabbis, preparing fliers for the Orthodox Jewish community and communicating with media outlets for both communities. He said Police Chief Paul Modica, Mayor Noramie Jasmin and officials also are involved.

Traditionally, both communities stick to themselves and that can be frustrating to the police. Noble said he’s getting better cooperation from both communities.

In the religious community, Noble said, “People have to lock their doors and close their windows. The rabbis in the community are calling and we’ve been telling them. They have to make sure their security systems work, if they have them.”

He said police are awaiting forensic results from several houses.

Noble said he’s concerned about the violence against the day workers continuing and fears that the burglaries in the Jewish community also could lead to violence. He said the burglars broke into a room where a baby was sleeping.

“If this continues, someone is going to wake up and confront one of these guys, and someone could get seriously hurt,” Noble said.

Police and immigration leaders have worked together before, trying to persuade the day laborers to take more precautions.

Some of the attacks on the day laborers have taken place on the railroad tracks near Commerce Street and North Myrtle Avenue, where three laborers were beaten at 5 a.m. Wednesday. Two brothers were hospitalized, with one taken to Westchester Medical Center with a fractured skull.

He said the investigation and attempt to communicate with the laborers led the police to three more people who were severely beaten and robbed, but never went to the police. One man was beaten and robbed of $1,000 in the same area along the tracks near Commerce Street, Noble said.

“We know there are people out there who have been attacked but have not come to us,” Noble said. “I don’t know if they are afraid of the robbers or afraid of us, or maybe both. We need some more mutual trusts.”

Legislator Aron Wieder, D-Spring Valley, who represents both communities, said he remains confident the police will stop the crime wave.

So far, Wieder said, no one has been hurt during the break-ins, like in the case of the street robberies.

“I feel for the people who come to this country for a better life,” Wieder said. “They work very hard. I have a spot in my heart for these guys. They are going through a tough time.”

Wieder said a broader concern is the weakening of the Rockland Intelligence Center, which tracks crime trends, by the county’s financial crisis. Some town supervisors refused to send an officer to the unit and the Drug Task Force unless the county pays the full salary and benefits of the officers.

“I am concerned because the intelligence center is on the chopping block these type of things might become more prevalent, not only in my district but across the county,” Wieder said.

{Journal News/ Newscenter}


  1. For those people whose mantra is, “Cut government spending!” you see the results. Cutting bsck the police department gets more crime. Cutting back health care gets more sickenss – possibly including epidemic diseases that our great-grandparents fear but we’ve scarcely heard of. Cuttng back infrastructure gets you bridges that collapese, gas mains that blow up and guardrails that are too low.

    You get what you pay for. Give tax subsidies to industries and individuals that don’t need them, and you have less to spend on the things that protect us all. Keeping highways safe and police departments funded is more important than keeping a few pricey airplanes for the Defense Department. Defense begins at home.

  2. Yes, we should be taxed more so that the toeiva agenda could be pushed, so that the GSA could fund more lavish parties, so that health care can be converted to the British or Canadian system where people have to come to America to get serious care.

    We also need to support illegal immigration. How about the support that the overpaid and over pensioned teachers need to continue to indoctrinate our children in the wonders of a Socialist economy and the greatness of union support (for them and not us).

    What would happen to all the empty schools that could be sold if they weren’t propped up by our funds? How would the overpriced administrators be able to live it up without us?

    Let’s not forget to fund the agencies destroying energy in America who are also pushing green companies that bleed billions as they go bankrupt and fail.

    No on has claimed that our major agencies are underfunded. Oldtimer, the days when government could be trusted to spend our money favorably are old time stories.

  3. Much closer to the heart of Monsey than even Blueberry Hill, on Albert Drive there was a robbery a week ago during Shabbos, when the homeowners were away. In other words, the people were observing the home and knew wehen they were away. It is getting scary.