(JTA) – A Muslim teenager from New York City who helped police catch a man who struck an Orthodox Jewish woman on the subway was honoured by community leaders.
Ahmed Khalifa, 17, was presented Thursday with a donated laptop computer for college in the fall and a citation praising his actions.
State Assemblyman Dov Hikind, who presented the award, noted that Khalifa is Muslim and helped an Orthodox Jewish woman.
“In a time of such divisiveness, it’s refreshing to see a story like this resonate within our communities,” said Hikind, an Orthodox Jew, who was joined by community faith leaders and politicians in the ceremony.
Khalifa said in a statement, the Brooklyn Eagle reported: “I’m just a guy. I think everyone should be doing this because we are all one people; I would help anyone out no matter who they are, I’m just happy people are learning that this is the right thing to do.”
The teen stopped a Brooklyn-bound train on Dec. 28 so the woman could receive medical attention after the assailant’s slap broke her glasses and caused her to lose consciousness. She was removed from the train and taken to a local hospital.
Khalifa then exited the train to follow the assailant. The teen contacted the Shomrim Jewish safety patrol, which got the police involved. He waited near the bus stop until the police arrived.
The police removed the assailant, identified as Rayvon Jones, 31, from the bus. Jones was charged with assault in Brooklyn Criminal Court.