Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Crown Heights

Crown Heights is a neighborhood in the borough of Brooklyn in New York City, located east of Prospect Park.It is the worldwide headquarters of the Chabad sect of Hasidic Jews. A large African-American and Afro-Caribbean population coexists with Ultra-Orthodox Jews in Crown Heights, not always easily.

In 1991, a car carrying the Rebbe Schneerson of Chabad ran a red light and ran over an African-American child, Gavin Cato. A private Hasidic ambulance came to the scene and refused to treat Cato, instead treating the barely scratched Hasidic driver of the car that hit Cato. Cato later died of his injuries. Residents of the neighborhood rioted and attacked Hasidim, killing a visiting student from Australia by the name of Yankel Rosenbaum, who had come to continue study on the Holocaust. The person charged with killing Rosenbaum, an African-American named Lemrick Nelson, was acquitted. Claims that he admitted to having stabbed Rosenbaum were dismissed by the jury.

Known for Chabad, Crown Heights is one of the best preserved neighborhoods of New York City. It is home to hundreds of stately neoclassical townhomes. Eastern Parkway, the main street of Crown Heights, is a copy of the Champs-Elysses in Paris.