Man Who Hurled Explosive Device That Burned 55-Year-Old Woman in NYC Accused of Hate Crimes

A man who threw an explosive device that caused burns on a 55-year-old woman in New York City almost two months ago was arrested and charged with three separate hate crimes.

The New York City Police Department (NYPD) Hate Crimes unit announced the arrest on Twitter Wednesday, identifying the suspect as 24-year-old Mohammed Othman.

"UPDATE: Arrested, Mohammed Othman, 24, of Staten Island, and charged for three separate anti-Semitic Hate Crime Assaults that occurred Thursday May 20th, at 37 W. 47th St, at 1604 Broadway, and at 36th St and 9th Ave, in Manhattan," NYPD Hate Crimes wrote in the tweet.

⚠️UPDATE: Arrested, Mohammed Othman, 24, of Staten Island, and charged for three separate anti-Semitic Hate Crime Assaults that occurred Thursday May 20th, at 37 W. 47th St, at 1604 Broadway, and at 36th St and 9th Ave, in Manhattan. https://t.co/KYgvmfl5RH pic.twitter.com/kQty8TTUD6

— NYPD Hate Crimes (@NYPDHateCrimes) July 7, 2021

A spokesperson for the NYPD told Newsweek that Othman has been charged with gang assault 1 as a hate crime, assault 3 as a hate crime, and reckless endangerment 2 as a hate crime.

The arrest on Wednesday comes more than a month after the NYPD asked the public's help in identifying Othman.

On May 21, NYPD Hate Crimes posted a picture of the suspect wearing a covering over his face and head, while another picture showed him holding what appeared to be an explosive device in the back of a pick-up truck.

According to the NYPD, Othman was seen in the back of a pick-up truck on May 20 at around 6 p.m. displaying "an explosive device" in the vicinity of 37 West 47th Street.

The NYPD spokesperson told Newsweek that Othman then proceeded to throw the device, "which detonated causing burns to a 55 year-old female victim." Police previously described the explosive device as a firecracker.

Shortly after the incident, the woman was transported by Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Bellevue Hospital where she was treated and released.

Police neither identified the victim nor reported any additional injuries from the incident.

Prior to the arrest on Wednesday, authorities said they were investigating the incident as a hate crime.

The May incident occurred amid clashing protests between pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian demonstrators in New York City's Time Square.

In that same month, violence erupted between Israel and the Palestinian militant group known as Hamas, prompting protests from supporters of both sides. A mutual ceasefire was eventually reached between Israel and Hamas.

In addition to the arrest of Othman on Wednesday, the NYPD previously apprehended four other individuals who assaulted a Jewish man during the clashing protests in May.

One man, identified by police as 23-year-old Waseem Awawdeh, was arrested in May and charged with assault/hate crime, gang assault, menacing, aggravated harassment/hate crime, and criminal possession of a weapon.

On June 23, the NYPD said that three other individuals had been arrested for the anti-Semitic attacks in May. Those suspects were not identified.

New York City
Pro Palestinian protesters face off with a group of Israel supporters and police in a violent clash in Times Square on May 20, 2021 in New York City. On Wednesday, July 7, the NYPD announced that a man who threw an explosive device that burned a 55-year-old woman had been arrested and charged with hate crimes. Spencer Platt/Getty