The family of a man who was stabbed in the head in a Hanukkah attack in New York has released a graphic photo of him in his hospital bed as they say he may never regain consciousness.
Josef Neumann was among the five people injured when Grafton Thomas, 37, allegedly stormed into a rabbi’s home in Monsey during a Hanukkah celebration last Saturday.
Neumann’s family say the knife used in the attack penetrated his skull and impacted his brain.
He also suffered three cuts to the head, a cut to his neck and his right arm was shattered.
The harrowing photo released on Tuesday shows him unconscious and hooked up to a respiratory machine in his hospital bed.
Josef Neumann was among the five people injured in the Hanukkah stabbing attack in Monsey, New York last Saturday. His family released this harrowing photo of him in hospital and said they fear he will never regain consciousness
Neumann’s family said that his condition is so severe that doctors had not yet been able to perform surgery on his arm.
‘Doctors are not optimistic about his chances to regain consciousness,’ his family said.
‘If our father does miraculously recover partially, doctors expect that he will have permanent damage to the brain; leaving him partially paralyzed and speech-impaired for the rest of his life.’
Neumann has seven children, multiple grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
According to a criminal complaint, Neumann was among those injured when the alleged attacker – with a scarf covering his face – entered the rabbi’s home next door to a synagogue and said ‘no one is leaving’.
The alleged attacker, Grafton Thomas, 37, has pleaded not guilty to charges including five counts of attempted murder. He is also charged with federal hate crimes after his handwritten journals containing anti-Semitic references were found
The suspect, wearing a hood and scarf, makes his way up stairs to Rabbi Chaim Rottenberg’s Shul carrying the blade
Thomas was arrested within two hours of the attack. When police pulled his car over in Manhattan, he allegedly had blood all over his clothing and smelled of bleach but said ‘almost nothing’ to the arresting officers
Thomas then allegedly took out a machete and started stabbing and slashing people in the home packed with dozens of congregants.
The five victims suffered serious injuries – including a severed finger, slash wounds and deep lacerations.
Thomas has pleaded not guilty to charges including five counts of attempted murder.
He is also charged with federal hate crimes after authorities said they found his handwritten journals containing anti-Semitic references and that he had recently used his phone to look up information on Hitler and the location of synagogues.
Thomas was arrested within two hours of the attack.
When police pulled his car over in Manhattan, he allegedly had blood all over his clothing and smelled of bleach but said ‘almost nothing’ to the arresting officers.
Authorities say they discovered a blood-stained 18-inch machete and a knife smeared with dried blood and hair from Thomas’ car after the attack.
The stabbings, which occurred on the seventh night of Hanukkah, came amid a series of violent attacks targeting Jews in the region that have led to increased security, particularly around religious gatherings.
Thomas allegedly took out a machete and started stabbing and slashing people in the rabbi’s home, which was packed with dozens of congregants
The attacker stormed into the home of Rabbi Chaim Leibush Rottenberg at around 10pm last Saturday and began wildly swinging a knife at some 60 worshipers gathered for a candle-lighting ceremony for the seventh night of Hanukkah
An attorney retained by the alleged attacker’s family, Michael Sussman, said Thomas had been hearing voices and may have stopped taking psychiatric medications recently.
A criminal complaint said journals recovered from Thomas’ home in Greenwood Lake included comments questioning ‘why ppl mourned for anti-Semitism when there is Semitic genocide’ and a page with drawings of a Star of David and a swastika.
A phone recovered from his car included repeated internet searches for ‘Why did Hitler hate the Jews’ as well as ‘German Jewish Temples near me’ and ‘Prominent companies founded by Jews in America,’ the complaint said.
On the day of the stabbings, the phone’s browser was used to access an article titled: ‘New York City Increases Police Presence in Jewish Neighborhoods After Possible Anti-Semitic Attacks. Here’s What To Know,’ the complaint said.
Sussman said he visited Thomas’ home and found stacks of notes he described as ‘the ramblings of a disturbed individual’ but nothing to point to an ‘anti-Semitic motive’ or suggest Thomas intentionally targeted the rabbi’s home.
‘My impression from speaking with him is that he needs serious psychiatric evaluation,’ Sussman said. ‘His explanations were not terribly coherent.’
Source: Daily Mail