The New York Police Department announced overnight (Saturday) that it has closed the complaint filed by a protester who harassed MK Simcha Rothman, who then grabbed her megaphone in the city Friday night, Haaretz reported.
According to the NYPD, the complaint was submitted concerning an incident on Madison Ave. by a 33-year-old woman who claimed that a man she was acquainted with grabbed the megaphone around her neck and acted violently while upsetting the victim. There were no visible injuries. The complaint has been closed.
Leftwing activists "accompanied" MK Rothman on his way to his hotel in Manhattan, where he is staying ahead of the Celebrate Israel parade, which will take place on Sunday. MK Rothman is also set to headline the Israel National News Jerusalem Conference in the city, where he will sit down with Prof. Alan Dershowitz to discuss the contentious judicial reform plan.
MK Rothman recounted the incident from his point of view on social media. "A small group of violent protesters attacked me and my wife as we walked in New York late at night," Rothman recalled. "They blocked my path, stepped on my wife, Chana's, foot, and cursed, including wishes of death. My security guards called the police, explained where we were, and we continued walking while ignoring the protesters."
Regarding the incident with the megaphone, Rothman wrote: "At one point, the protesters understood that we weren't bothered by them, and then they put their megaphone against our ears (which is assault) and yelled. Both the guards and I told them, again and again, to stop and move away, but they continued."
After the warnings, Rothman writes, "I took the megaphone which the protester shoved in my ear, without touching her, of course. After about half a block, we reached a spot where we could wait for the police. The police accompanied me to the hotel, and the incident ended."
MK Rothman also described his meetings with the local Jewish community: "Over Shabbat, as well as during a visit on Thursday, the Jewish community here welcomed me with great joy. With honor and appreciation. There is a lot of support and encouragement to proceed with the reform plan, but even the few who disagreed came and were respectful.
The violent attackers came from Israel. Just as in Israel, they represent a small and violent group here too. It's permissible to protest, it's forbidden to physically attack and harass MKs. The fact that Yair Lapid and Benny Gantz don't condemn these violent attacks on MKs, and even encourage them, shows more anything else that they are in opposition of the state."
Rothman discussed the incident during a conversation on Sunday morning with Galei Tzahal, "There will be a judicial reform. There are people who think that through violence and threats, they will manage to get us to think differently. But violence actually convinces me that reform is important and how important it is to do it quickly."
Following the incident, Shany Granot-Lubaton, who is organizing the protests in New York, said, "Manhattan is not Hadera. Here there is democracy, and we can tell him what we want to his face."
"No police officer will stop us from utilizing our basic freedom of expression."
Representatives of the "Ahim Laneshek" association, who were also protesting in New York, shouted at Rothman, "In Israel, you put fighters in jail, and people like you wander around on vacation in New York - we will not allow them to destroy our country."