Man arrested for threatening and spitting on elderly Jews in Florida village

(JTA) — A jogger was arrested for allegedly verbally threatening and spitting on elderly Jews in Florida as they walked home from synagogue.

Daniel Valerivich Starikov, 33, of Hollywood, Florida and who is originally from Britain, was arrested on Wednesday on two charges of battery on persons 65 years or older, and three charges of assault while evidencing prejudice.

The incidents he is accused of took place in the Miami-area village of Bal Harbour on Friday night, March 22 and some or part of his actions were caught on surveillance cameras, according to the Miami Herald.

Starikov approached one group of elderly Jews and slammed his fists together in a threatening gesture.

“I’ll show you,” he told the group, according to a police report cited by the newspaper. “I’m going to shove my d— down your throats. You Jews, I’m gonna get you.”

He approached a second group five minutes later and allegedly spat on them.

The men in the groups were wearing kippas and one was dressed in Hasidic Jewish garb.

The Bal Harbour Village Council in December 2017 passed an ordinance that helps police define and investigate anti-Semitic acts as hate crimes. It was the first of its kind for a municipality, the Miami Herald reported at the time.

Under the ordinance, police officers may consider whether a crime had an anti-Semitic motivation and investigate it as a violation of the ordinance in addition to state and federal hate crimes laws.

In December 2015, the village became the first major municipality to pass an ordinance against the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel.