ROCKY POINT, N.Y. – Two Mexican immigrants fishing off a Long Island jetty were set upon by a group of four white youths who beat them and stole their money while using racial and ethnic slurs, police said.
The young men have been charged with robbery and assault as hate crimes in connection with the Monday night attack and were arraigned Wednesday.
Authorities identified the defendants as William Foley, 16; Nicholas Provenzano, 19; Daniel Sturgis, 19, and Jesse Lee Ward, 18, all of Rocky Point.
Police said the two Mexican men, who were not identified, were not seriously injured.
Attorney James D'Angelo, who represented Ward and Foley in court, said all four youths had entered not guilty pleas.
"They are denying involvement in this," D'Angelo said.
Long Island has been the site of other anti-immigrant incidents. In 2000, two Mexican men were beaten by two locals in Farmingville who promised them work. On July 4, 2003, a Mexican family barely escaped with their lives after teens set their Farmingville house ablaze by shooting fireworks through a window.