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Crown Heights Race Riot Figure Stabbed


A man who was convicted of violating the civil rights of a Jewish student who was stabbed and killed during the Crown Heights riots of 1991, was violently assaulted Sunday following a possible road rage incident police say.

Lemrick Nelson was stabbed in the head with an ice pick around 1 p.m. at 168th St. and Riverside in an incident possibly sparked by road rage. Police found Nelson lying unconscious with a stab wound to the head and the ice pick lying near his body, but no sign of the attacker. He was taken to Harlem Hospital where he is in stable condition.

Police have not made any arrests in the case.

Nelson, who has since admitted to stabbing Rosenbaum, was acquitted in two separate murder trials held shortly after the riots. Instead, he was convicted on federal charges of violating the civil rights of Yankel Rosenbaum, 12 years after the Jewish man's death, and was released from prison in 2004.

After his release from prison, Nelson has been living in New Jersey and told reporters that he had started a new, quiet life as a family man, living with his girlfriend and young daughter.

The Crown Heights riots began August 19,1991 after a 7-year-old black boy was hit and killed by a car in a motorcade transporting members of the Orthodox Jewish Community. The boy's death proved to be the boiling point for racial tensions that had been growing between the two Crown Heights communities.

During the ensuing four days of race-fueled violence, Jewish residents were targeted by black rioters who looted businesses and destroyed property throughout the Brooklyn neighborhood.

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