Two men and a woman face hate crime charges after allegedly yelling anti-Semitic slurs while firing paintballs at two friends who were chatting on an upstate New York street Wednesday night, sending one of the victims to the hospital, police said.
Police say the injured victim and his friend, both of whom are members of the Town of Ramapo's Jewish community volunteer patrol group, Chaverim, were leaning against the friend's car on Rita Avenue and talking at about 11:30 p.m. when the duo says a car bearing a North Carolina license plate approached them.
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The friends told police they both saw a male passenger fire about fix or six shots from what looked like a black rifle. One of the friends was hit twice in the stomach with paintballs; his friend's car was struck three or four times, police said.
The victims used their portable radios to broadcast a call for help, and members of their Chaverim group who had been patrolling the area arrived in time to follow the suspects' vehicle. The patrol members cornered the vehicle not far away in Monsey, and police officers arrested the three individuals inside when they arrived.
Police say they recovered a carbon dioxide-powered paint ball weapon from the car.
The friend who was taken to the hospital suffered minor injuries and is expected to be OK, police said.
The suspects, identified as Shashi Ramsaroop, 23, of Clarkstown, 20-year-old Lindsey Peaks, of Spring Valley, and 19-year-old Demetrius Torain, also of Spring Valley, were charged with second-degree assault as a hate crime, a felony.
They also were charged with aggravated harassment, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal tampering. They were scheduled to be arraigned Thursday morning.
Information attorneys for them wasn't immediately available.