Excerpted from Patch.com
DITMAS PARK, BROOKLYN — The long and frustrating community hunt for a man who stabbed a Hasidic Jew in Crown Heights on Feb. 10 finally made some headway last week, when the suspect in two recent Prospect Park stabbings reportedly confessed to the infamous Crown Heights “hate crime.”
Keny Rochelin, 26, was taken into custody just before midnight on March 9 at 184 Parkside Ave., on the border of Ditmas Park and Prospect-Lefferts Gardens, police said.
Rochelin attacked two people in or near Prospect Park that night, police said.
First, he slashed the hand of a 35-year-old man at 11:15 p.m., a law enforcement source told Patch.
Around 15 minutes later, Rochelin snatched the wallet of a 42-year-old man and stabbed him in the stomach with a large knife, according to the NYPD.
Our source said Monday that both victims later identified Rochelin as their attacker.
Then, during police interrogation, Rochelin confessed to stabbing 25-year-old Yehuda Leib Brikman on Feb. 10 in Crown Heights, our source said.
The source confirmed Monday that the NYPD had investigated the attack as a hate crime, but said there is now “no indication the [Feb. 10] attack it was motivated by bias.” The DA’s office will not be pursuing any hate-crime charges, the source said.
Brikman’s stabbing had a deep psychological impact on Brooklyn’s Jewish community.
The Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office confirmed Monday that Rochelin has yet to be arraigned.
Rochelin reportedly lives at a homeless shelter on 83rd Street in Manhattan. (The NYPD has his address listed as 200 W. 83rd St.)
News of Rochelin’s arrest comes 10 days after Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams offered $1,000 of his own money for information leading to the arrest of a mugger who attacked and robbed two elderly women in Park Slope. At that time, NYPD officials said no crimes had taken place in Prospect Park so far this year.
Rochelin was arrested in the 70th police precinct, which includes Ditmas Park and Flatbush. According to NYPD statistics, overall crime in the 70th so far this year is down about 3 percent compared to the same period last year.
Prospect Park itself, however, is covered by the 78th police precinct. According to police statistics, overall crime is down in the 78th by nearly 25 percent so far this year compared to the same period last year.