The New York Daily News provides video from a sword fight on Sunday at the Baba Makhan Shah Lubana Sikh Center in Queens, where a rival gang enters during prayer and seemingly starts a scuffle, “like a scene out of West Side Story,” according to the New York Post.
“We tried to open membership, and a group didn’t want it,” explained the temple’s president Jarnail Singh. “They want to fight it.” Ultimately, though, he blamed the police, who were guarding the temple during services, but failed to stop the mob.
“[NYPD officer John McCoy] let about 100 people inside with bats, swords and stucks to attack us,” Singh said to the Post. McCoy said the group claimed they wanted to worship. “If you’re going to pray, you’re allowed inside,” he said.
“I’m going to kill you,” screamed one man before punching another in the face.
Seven people were arrested and arraigned on riot and assault charges.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on April 26, 2011