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Man charged over Golders Green 'hate crime' attack after ‘brandishing knife at staff’ in Jewish supermarket
30 January 2024, 19:00 | Updated: 30 January 2024, 19:03
A man who allegedly brandished a knife at staff in a Jewish supermarket during an alleged hate crime has been charged and is set to appear in court.
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Gabriel Abdullah, 34, was arrested minutes after the alleged attack, where he demanded staff answer questions about "events in Palestine", according to reports.
Police said the harrowing incident had "left our Jewish communities shaken" and said they would be carrying out increased patrols in the predominantly Jewish area following the incident.
Officers initially responded to reports of the man brandishing a knife at Kay's kosher supermarket in Golders Green in north-west London just before 1.30pm on Monday.
As the assailant allegedly threatened workers with a knife, members of the public rushed in to intervene before Abdullah was arrested around 10 minutes later.
Footage posted to social media following the incident showed a man wearing a grey hoodie as he tussled with shop workers while carrying a knife.
Abdullah, who lives on the same road as the supermarket was charged with affray and possession of a bladed article in a public place. He is due to appear at Willesden Green Magistrates Court.
Police previously stressed the incident was not being treated as terrorism.
Chief Superintendent Sara Leach, responsible for policing in north-west London, said: "Yesterday's incident in Golders Green has understandably caused significant concern and left our Jewish communities shaken.
"I want to be clear, this matter is being treated as a hate crime and we are dedicating significant resources to the investigation.
"Our officers responded quickly and were on the scene within six minutes and able to arrest the suspect within 10 minutes of being called.
"I want to pay tribute to the members of the public who bravely intervened before police arrived.
"This is being investigated as a hate crime by specialist detectives from our Community Safety Unit.
"I want to offer my reassurance that officers from the Met's Counter Terrorism Command have carried out a full assessment of the incident and remain in contact with local officers as the investigation continues.
"While this is not a terror investigation, that in no way detracts from how seriously we are taking this incident.
"Myself and my senior team spoke with community leaders and other partners over the course of yesterday afternoon to update them on the investigation and keep them informed. This will continue into today and the days ahead.
"We have been carrying out additional patrols in Golders Green over recent months and these will now increase in light of this incident."