New York News

Man Charged With Hate Crimes After St. Patrick’s Attack, Released on Bail

(Photo: NYPD)

By The Tablet Staff

MIDTOWN — A man believed to have thrown a wrench through a glass door of Cardinal Dolan’s residence at St. Patrick’s Cathedral has been arrested, according to authorities.

The NYPD announced that Juan Velez, 28, was apprehended on Wednesday, Nov. 9, and charged with criminal mischief as a hate crime and criminal mischief for the Oct. 28 incident. 

He is also facing charges for two other hate crimes targeting religious sites, according to cops. On Oct. 29, police say a man damaged the front doors of both All Saints Episcopal Church and the Archdiocese of New York office in Manhattan. 

Velez was released on bail. His next court appearance is scheduled for Dec. 13.

In a surveillance video of the incident at St. Patrick’s Cathedral released by police, a man steps onto the sidewalk and scans the area before throwing a wrench at the cathedral. He then casually walks away northbound on Madison Avenue. 

Responding officers recovered the wrench at the scene, according to the NYPD. 

The portion of St. Patrick’s Cathedral where the vandal threw the wrench is part of the residence of clergy members of the parish. Cardinal Dolan was not home at the time of the incident. 

At the time of the attack, Cardinal Dolan told Currents News that the culprit likely needs help. 

“Part of my gut says they ought to throw him in jail. The other [part] says he’s probably some mentally challenged guy that needs some help,” Cardinal Dolan said. “That doesn’t mean he should be out on the street … but darn it, he needs some compassion and care.”