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NEW YORK — Community members in Brooklyn’s Crown Heights neighborhood are gathering to mark the 20th anniversary of race riots there.

The riots tore through the neighborhood in 1991, stoked by tensions between the Jewish and black communities living side-by-side.

The rioting began Aug. 19 of that year after a 7-year-old black boy, Gavin Cato, was struck and killed by a driver belonging to the ultra-Orthodox Lubavitch community. Three hours later, a gang of angry blacks shouting “Get the Jew!” descended on and fatally stabbed Yankel Rosenbaum, who was visiting from Australia.

For more than two days, stores were looted stores, police cars were burned and bottles hurled.

One of central figures in the rioting was killed last year in a possible road rage incident.


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