An Egyptian man accused of stabbing a Boston rabbi outside a Jewish day school and synagogue on Thursday was in the country illegally, after overstaying his visa Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials say
Khaled Awad, 24, allegedly stabbed Rabbi Shlomo Noginksi eight times on the street outside Shaloh House on Chestnut Hill Avenue in Brighton, at around 1.20pm on Thursday afternoon.
It has since emerged that although Awad had entered the U.S. legally using a student visa, he lost his legal status on May 14, ICE agents found.
‘Khaled Awad, 24, a citizen of Egypt, entered the United States on a student visa in August 2019,’ an ICE spokesman told Fox News. ‘However, he failed to stay enrolled as required by law, resulting in a loss of legal status in the U.S on May 14, 2021.’
ICE have lodged a detainer with the Boston Police Department meaning he will be taken into custody by the agency once criminal proceedings are complete.
24-year-old Khaled Awad was lead into court on Friday for his arraignment in Brighton District Court
A bloodied Rabbi Shlomo Noginksi gets treated for his multiple stab wounds after an alleged kidnapping attempt on Thursday
Steve Sass and Zoe Golub-Sass attend a unity rally in Boston’s Brighton neighborhood, near the site of the stabbing attack in broad daylight on Rabbi Sholom Noginski the previous day The suspect is in custody and the attack will be investigated as a hate crime
Rabbi Noginski, who is a teacher and rabbi at the Shaloh House, was reportedly sitting outside talking on his cell phone when the suspect launched his attack on him.
Awad allegedly approached Rabbi Shlomo Noginski with a gun demanding the keys to his car, reports Chabad.
Noginski ran across the street to a park but Awad chase him, stabbing him in the arm multiple times.
Awad was arraigned on assault charges on Friday and was charged with assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon and assault and battery on an officer and will be held without bail until a hearing next Thursday.
The rabbi’s family and community leaders believe he was targeted in the attack because he is Jewish.
One of Awad’s former friends at the University of South Florida, Eric Valiente, told CBS Boston that Awad was ‘violent’ and ‘anti-Semitic.’
‘He started becoming violent,’ Valiente said.
‘He was very much anti-Semitic. He would say like all types of Jewish jokes. I thought he was joking at first and then I started to see seriousness in his comments.’
Aidan Anderson, a former roommate of Awad’s who is Jewish, also told CBS News that told he ended up moving out and had to obtain a restraining order last fall when Awad attacked him in their shared kitchen.
Members of the community attend a vigil for Rabbi Shlomo Noginski, who was stabbed outside a Jewish day school on Thursday, at Brighton Common park, in the Brighton neighborhood of Boston
Natash and Eric Bakke attend a unity rally in Boston, near the site of the stabbing attack
Members of Boston’s Jewish, faith, police and political communities gathered for a unity vigil to condemn the stabbing attack on Boston Rabbi Sholom Noginski
Khaled Awad, 24, (pictured) was charged with assault and battery by means of a dangerous weapon and assault and battery on a police officer
On Friday Suffolk County District Attorney Rachael Rollins said the DA’s civil rights unit and the Boston Police Department Civil Rights Unit were conducting a civil rights investigation into the alleged assault and would keep the community updated.
Rollins attended a community vigil on Friday morning with Mayor Kim Janey where the attack against Rabbi Noginski allegedly took place.
‘We have to recognize that anti-Semitism is on the rise and we need to hold people accountable when they do this so that they are made an example of,’ Rollins said.
‘It’s important that we recognize with respect to the Jewish community that not only globally, but locally, they are being terrorized and hate crime is on the rise,’ Rollins added.
Janey said the investigation into whether the alleged attack was a hate crime will give the shaken community the answers it needs.
‘It is important that we understand what the motives of this hate, of this violence are,’ she said. ‘An investigation is underway to determine whether this is a hate crime or not, and we will get the answers we seek.’
Rabbi Shlomo Noginksi was stabbed eight times and was later rushed to hospital where he needed surgery to treat the wounds
Police officers arrived at the scene to find Rabbi Noginski suffering from stab wounds. Pictured: Officers at the scene
Police officers arrived at the scene to find Rabbi Noginski, who moved to Boston from Israel, suffering from ‘multiple stab wounds’, Boston Police Department said in a statement. He was later rushed to a local hospital where he was treated for ‘non-life threatening injuries’.
Police have not yet said whether they are treating the attack as a hate crime, nor have they disclosed a motive for the attack.
But the antisemitism civil rights group Anti-Defamation League (ADL) New England have said there are ‘multiple indicators pointing towards antisemitism’ and called for the police to investigate the incident as a hate crime.
As soon as staff became aware of the situation outside the building, where a summer day camp was being held for children, the facility went into lockdown to ensure their safety, Rabbi Dan Rodkin, the Executive Director of Shaloh House, pictured, explained in a statement
Sources told WHDV that Rabbi Noginski was wearing a yarmulke at the time of the attack, which was caught on CCTV.
As soon as staff became aware of the situation outside the building, where a summer day camp was being held for children, the facility went into lockdown to ensure their safety, Rabbi Dan Rodkin, the Executive Director of Shaloh House said in a statement.
Images shared on social media appear to show Rabbi Noginksi grimacing in pain as a Boston police officer tries so stem the bleeding from a stab wound to the victim’s left arm. His white shirt can be seen covered in splotches of blood.
Hours later, another image was shared from the hospital which showed Rabbi Noginski lying on a bed while looking at the camera. Cuts can be seen on his fingers and arms.
Speaking from his hospital bed, Rabbi Noginski told Lubavitch.com : ‘I am grateful to the Boston Police Department for their rapid response, and relieved that the perpetrator is in custody. I am looking forward to returning to my work as soon as possible.’
Rabbi Shlomo Noginksi was attacked on the street outside Shaloh House, a Jewish Day School and synagogue on Chestnut Hill Avenue in Brighton, at around 1.20pm on Thursday afternoon
Rabbi Rodkin said he and the staff ‘are all very shaken’ by the attack and asked the public to keep Rabbi Noginski in their prayers for a speedy recovery, while adding that Shaloh House would be increasing their security for the rest of the summer.
Dov Hikind, a former New York state assemblyman and founder of the grassroots coalition Americans Against Antisemitism, told Fox News he spoke with Rabbi Noginski’s brother, who said the rabbi is expected to undergo surgery for eight stab wounds.
Hikind said the rabbi’s family believe he was targeted because he is Jewish.
‘Based on my conversation with his brother (he) believes the guy wanted to kidnap him,’ he said. ‘The perpetrator was not interested in his money, not interested in his cell phone, was not interested in anything except to attack this individual.’
Hikind said anti-Israel rhetoric has contributed to a rise in anti-Semitic attacks and singled out Democrat Representatives Ilhan Omar, Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Ayanna Pressley and Rashida Tlaib for their comments.
Rep. Ilhan Omar has been accused of being a ‘rabid anti-Semite’ for saying her Jewish colleagues in Congress ‘haven’t been equal partners in justice’ and defending her comments equating the U.S. and Israel to terrorist groups like Hamas and the Taliban.
While police have not revealed details about what motivated the attack, others are also concerned that Rabbi Noginski was attacked because of his religion.
The Anti-Defamation League has said there are ‘multiple indicators pointing towards antisemitism’ and called for the police to investigate the incident as a hate crime.
‘Facts emerging from the stabbing of a Rabbi in Brighton yesterday include multiple indicators pointing towards antisemitism,’ said Robert Trestan, Regional Director of Anti-Defamation League in a statement on Friday.
‘We call on the Boston Police Department Civil Rights Unit to investigate yesterday’s violent attack as a hate crime. Boston’s Jewish community is angry, living in fear and need answers, accountability and security.’
Rabbi Rodkin said in a statement on Thursday: ‘Earlier today, Rabbi Shlomo Noginski was attacked on the street outside the Shaloh House.
‘He is, thank God, in stable condition and in good spirits and being treated in the hospital for stab wounds.’
Rabbi Noginski, who is a teacher and Rabbi at the Shaloh House, was reportedly sat outside the synagogue (pictured: file image) talking on his cell phone when the suspect launched his attack on him
He continued: ‘As soon as our staff became aware of what happened outside, our facility went into lock down to ensure the safety of all the children and staff in our program. At no point during the incident were any of the children in danger.
‘The safety of our children and staff is of the utmost importance to us and we will be increasing security at the Shaloh House throughout the remainder of the summer.’
‘We are all very shaken by what happened and ask for you to please keep Rabbi Noginski in your prayers for a… speedy and complete recovery.
‘We are heartened by the outpouring of concern and compassion we have received in just the last hours since the incident.’
The police department said that Awad, who is from Brighton, has been arrested and will appear in Brighton District Court on charges of Assault and Battery by Means of a Dangerous Weapon and Assault and Battery on a police officer.
A knife and gun were allegedly found in a nearby alley where police arrested Awad, reports WCVB.
There has been an outpouring of support from the local community, with many wishing Rabbi Noginsky a speedy recovery.
Yaacov Behrman, the founder of The Jewish Future Alliance, an advocacy charity for those in the Jewish community and other minority groups, tweeted: ‘I spoke to Rabbi Shlomo Noginsky from the hospital.
‘He was in terrible pain, but said he was inspired by the tremendous amount of love and support from the community.’
Rabbi Aryeh Spero, the president of the Conference of Jewish Affairs, told Fox News the attack was not the only one.
‘There is a climate of more than just anti-Semitism,’ he said. ‘It’s physical attacks with the intent of killing people who are Jewish. Conspicuously Jewish. And that just doesn’t come out of thin air.’
The investigation into the attack is ongoing. Anyone with information should contact District D-14 Detectives at 617-343-4256.
For community members wishing to contact the police anonymously about the investigation, police urged them to call the CrimeStoppers Tip Line at 1 (800) 494-TIPS or by texting the word ‘TIP’ to CRIME (27463).