Hassan Yehia Chokr was charged with two felony counts of ethnic intimidation after he reportedly made antisemitic and racist threats to parents, young children, and security personnel at a preschool and synagogue in Bloomfield Hills on Friday.
The Dearborn man was arraigned on Monday and after learning his bond was set for $1 million and that he would be heavily restricted if he posted bail, things got heated.
He began screaming at the judge, using profanities, when he learned he would be restricted in his use of social media.
The Dearborn man believes his arrest violates his freedom of speech.
“Remember, the way you’re judging me. God will judge you the same way,” Chokr yelled.
Chokr posted a video of himself screaming at people outside of the synagogue asking if they support Israel and shouted “shame on you.”
He later recorded a video of the Bloomfield Township Police Department conducting a traffic stop.
Mark Miller, a Rabbi at Temple Beth El told Local 4, “this was terrorizing for a lot of us who were here.”
Community members, including the Rabbi, wondered why Chokr was not arrested during the traffic stop.
“He said on video to the police officers, ‘I’m going to another synagogue,’ and it felt very threatening and I guess I can’t comment on how they work behind the scenes, but it looked very bad,” said Miller.
Bloomfield Township Police Chief, John Gallagher, told Local 4 that these cases are tough to prove.
“At the time, we did not have the information to meet the threshold of ethnic intimidation and at that time we needed to further investigate. Part of that was making sure we positively identified the subject that was driving the van,” Chief Gallagher said.
The chief said it wasn’t until they saw his Instagram post that they felt they had all of the information needed to make an arrest.
Chokr is expected to return to court in two weeks.