August 10: Sentencing of Michael Williams – Defender Against Bigotry

Friday, August 10, 2012 9:30am in EDT 111 Centre Street, Manhattan, Room 631 Part 48 Facebook Event: Friday, August 10, 2012 9:30am in EDT 111 Centre Street, Manhattan, Room […]

Friday, August 10, 2012
9:30am in EDT
111 Centre Street, Manhattan, Room 631 Part 48

Facebook Event:
Friday, August 10, 2012
9:30am in EDT
111 Centre Street, Manhattan, Room 631 Part 48

Facebook Event:

FRIDAY, AUG. 10, 9:30 AM, 111 CENTRE ST., ROOM 631, PART 48

Michael Williams was convicted of second-degree assault for defending young Muslim women against a hate-filled bigot. He will be sentenced Friday, Aug. 10. The prosecutor, who introduced blatantly anti-Muslim rhetoric into the trial, wants to send him to prison for 5 years. He wants this union drywall taper and gentle father of two to lose his job and his home. He wants to send a message that it’s okay to physically assault Muslims and and protesters in New York City. That it’s okay to assault people who stand up to bigotry.

Michael Williams assaulted no one. He intervened verbally to protect the girls and after he was attacked he only defended himself .

But this case is not just about Michael Williams, Michael Williams is being used as a message to all people who stand for their right to protest and who stand up against Anti-Muslim bigotry.

Please come to court Friday to support Michael at his sentencing.

You may also write a letter asking for clemency to the judge, Hon. Daniel McCullough, New York State Supreme Court, and email it  to Michael’s defense attorney, Lamis Jamal Deek, at

A short account of Michael’s arrest and trial is posted below.


On Jan.9, 2011, this gentle father of two, a union drywall taper, saw Muslim-hating bigot Joe Kenny harassing and abusing a group of teenage Muslim women who were going for pizza after a rally commemorating the massacre of Gaza.

Michael, a passionate believer in human rights, had traveled all the way from his home near Boston to take part in that rally. He had a bullhorn.  When he heard the bigot harassing young women, Michael  said over his bullhorn that they had a right to be here and say what they believed. The outraged bigot then followed Michael into the street,physically assaulted Michael and left with his bullhorn. Despite the pleas of the girls he was protecting, Michael was arrested and charged with Assault in the First Degree and endangering the welfare of a child, because the Kenny’s son had watched his father assault Michael.

After three days deliberation , the jury acquitted Michael of first-degree felony assault the charge of endangering the welfare of a child (assailant Kenny’s son, who was allegedly present) was dismissed but convicted him of second-degree assault, for which he faces seven years in prison.

Michael’s conviction despite unchallenged evidence of self-defense, reflects the prosecution’s orchestrated campaign to punish and intimidate those who stand up against anti-Muslim bigotry and for Palestinian rights. The prosecution was permitted to introduce grossly prejudicial rhetoric against defense witnesses, one of who was even questioned about his opposition to a U.S. war with Iran and another teenage girl who was asked whhether she believed Michael was a “martyr for the Palestinian cause.”

Michael and the young girls he defended have been doubly victimized in this case, first by a racist attack on Jan. 11, 2011,and then by an unfair and politically motivated witch-hunt in the court.

For carrying out his civic duty, Michael faces up to 15 years in prison. The DA is carrying out a blatantly political prosecution, based on anti-Muslim and anti-Arab prejudice rather than the facts of the case.

To win justice in this case, your help is urgently needed. Please:

1. Donate to Michael’s defense fund. Go to, click “Send Money” then “Send Money Online” and follow the instructions on the right. At step 2 type “acpollack2@juno.comin the “To [email address]” field. (acpollack is serving as our Treasurer).

2. Come to Michael’s sentencing on Aug. 10, , 9:30 a.m., 111 Centre Street, Part 48 (Room 631), Manhattan.