NYC man accused of randomly punching strangers is indicted on hate-crimes charges

NEW YORK (AP) — A man who was arrested in March on charges of randomly hitting a woman walking down a street in New York City has been indicted on hate crime charges for that assault and several others, prosecutors said Tuesday.

Skiboky Stora, 40, of Brooklyn, is charged with assaulting, stalking and harassing strangers in a series of anti-female, anti-white, and antisemitic incidents between September of 2023 and March of this year, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said.

The March 25, 2024 assault on a 23-year-old woman in the Chelsea neighborhood attracted wide attention after the victim posted about it on TikTok and several other people described similar attacks in social media posts.

The victim in that case fell to the ground and suffered pain and swelling on the left side of her head, Bragg said.

That attack came months after two other assaults in the same neighborhood, prosecutors said.

On Sept. 20, 2023, Stora elbowed a 17-year-old student in the neck and said, “You people think you can do whatever you want,” using a curse word, according to the indictment.

Then on Oct. 26 he elbowed a 37-year-old woman's left shoulder, causing pain and bruising, prosecutors said.

And on Nov. 18, a husband and wife, both 28, were walking their dogs near Union Square when they saw Stora tearing down posters of Israeli hostages and stopped to take a photo, prosecutors said.

Noticing the couple looking at him, Stora followed them shouting anti-white and antisemitic threats and insults including, “Die, Jews, die!” according to the indictment.

Bragg said in a statement that Stora “allegedly committed a series of hate-motivated incidents against several individuals based on their perceived gender, race and religion.”

Stora was arraigned Tuesday on charges including assault as a hate crime and stalking as a hate crime.

He had been charged previously with assault in connection with several cases and pleaded not guilty.

He said outside the courtroom Tuesday, "They’re (trying to) indict me man...this guy Alvin Bragg he’s corrupted,” according to WNYW Fox 5.

Stora said authorities had “no probable cause” to arrest him, the TV station reported.

Stora is representing himself in court and has no attorney, the district attorney's office said. His next court date is Aug. 6.

A message seeking comment on the charges against him was left on Stora's Instagram page.