A New York City man accused of brutally attacking a homeless man from behind with a baseball bat was released from jail after posting $7,500 bail.
Karim Azizi, 36, was arrested and charged with assault, attempted assault, and criminal possession of a weapon on Wednesday after he was caught on security footage allegedly assaulting a 47-year-old man at Amsterdam Avenue and West 148th Street in the Hamilton Heights neighborhood of Manhattan Tuesday.NYPD
The victim, a homeless man, sustained several injuries, including “bleeding about the face and head, swelling about the back of the head, and a laceration about the front of the head,” according to an arrest affidavit via the New York Post. He was transported to a hospital in Harlem and noted to be in stable condition.
A police source told the Post that the victim and the man were in a verbal altercation prior to the attack.
The Manhattan District Attorney’s Office requested that Azizi’s bail be set at $40,000, but a judge set it at $7,500. The alleged offender was released the same day he was charged.
The Big Apple’s current crime wave has prompted city officials to call for a “dangerousness” clause to be added to New York’s No Bail law, which would give judges more discretion to keep violent offenders in jail, Fox 5 reported. The proposed clause has been endorsed by Mayor Eric Adams (D) and NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell.
Azizi’s lawyer criticized those calling for the clause, saying, “Ninety-nine percent of people who bail out… they make every court date, they never commit another crime again, in their lives, especially while they’re out on bail.”
However, data shows 4-in-10 suspects freed from jail from January 2020 to January 2021 due to the state’s No Bail law were rearrested, Breitbart News reported. New York’s No Bail law was implemented in 2020 and eliminated cash bail for a series of crimes.
While Azizi was required to post money to be released, as opposed to not paying for bail, the judge was slammed for setting the amount at a seemingly low figure for a suspect accused of a violent crime.
“$7,500 cash bail is really low” Michael Alcazar, a former NYPD detective for 30 years, told Fox 5. “We caught him, we arrested him. We processed him, they release him, It’s just insanity.”
“This is a dangerous person. You’re carrying around a weapon, like a bat, a knife, a gun, you’re a bad guy and you should stay in jail until the judge sees fit to impose whatever time you’re going to get,” Alcazar added.
Azizi is set to appear in court again Monday, Fox News reported.
You can follow Ethan Letkeman on Twitter at @EthanLetkeman.