While sitting in a cell on Riker's Island, facing charges that he assaulted a police officer, Ehud Halevy worried that he had unknowingly struck one of the cops who arrested him during a fracas at a Crown Heights youth center on Oct. 8.
"I was surprised there were so many charges," he said on Wednesday. '[The public defender] said I could get up to seven years."
After contemplating the incident, he told the lawyer "It's not true, it's a lie," and asked her to contact Rabbi Moshe Feiglin, director of the Aliya Center for at-risk youth, where the incident took place and see if the incident was captured by a surveillance camera.
Two weeks later, all charges against Halevy have been dropped by the Brooklyn District Attorney, and he and his lawyers are awaiting the results of a police investigation of the incident while contemplating a civil suit.
The silent video, now widely posted on the Internet, captured two officers -- one male and one female -- repeatedly striking Halevy, using a baton and pepper spray, after he refused to leave the center, where he had permission to crash from Rabbi Feiglin. While Halevy resists being handcuffed, he is not seen hitting anyone.
But Halevy said he is not angry about the incident.
"I have no anger in my consciousness; maybe in my sub-consciousness," said the soft-spoken ex-yeshiva boy, who left his Israeli immigrant parents' Flatbush home recently because of religious differences. He ended up at the center because he was familiar with it from his time at a yeshiva high school in Crown Heights.
Halevy said he now spends his time working on a software program that would translate many languages into a universal code based on symbols. continue...