Just last week the Winnipeg police were called to a cafe on Corydon Avenue on a hate crime report. The attack happened last Thursday, April 18th around 10:45 p.m.
An incident at a Corydon Avenue cafe that was originally reported as one of Winnipeg’s worst-ever hate crime was apparently staged, said police.
When officers arrived, they found a woman inside the restaurant who had been assaulted. She was taken to hospital in stable condition, treated and released.
Officers determined the business was a target for a robbery. The entire restaurant had been vandalized and the word “Jew” was spray-painted on the windows and in the parking lot. Police say this is the fourth hate crime at the same business in the last five months.
Yesterday, three owners of the BerMax Caffé were arrested and charged with public mischief, which involves intent to mislead and causing an officer to investigate an incident based on false information.
Police chief Danny Smyth said Wednesday the investigation has been a significant waste of police resources. Over 25 officers have invested nearly 1,000 hours through a busy holiday weekend trying to bring this investigation to a close.
Alexander, Oxana, and Maxim Berent are all facing charges and have reportedly been released on a promise to appear. Filing false complaints of criminal acts of anti-Semitism is not only illegal, but they also undermine the important work necessary to counter anti-Semitism and hate in all forms.
A GoFundMe page had been set up to support the café after a previous incident last month.
Robbie Kfir Mulder-Kiesman, who set up the fundraiser, said in a statement that fundraising efforts have been suspended until more information is available.
The investigation still continues, the official statement from Winnipeg Police will be announced next week.