A 61-year-old Chinese American man was in serious but stable condition in a New York hospital on Sunday after being the victim of an Asian hate crime.
On Friday night, the man collected cans in East Harlem when he was assaulted from behind, thrown to the ground, and repeatedly kicked in the back. The attacker seemed to be stomping on the man's back, based on the surveillance footage obtained by police, USA Today reported.
Asian Crime in New York sends 61-year-old to the hospital in critical condition
The most recent incident in an alarming surge of attacks against Asian people countrywide is thought to be sparked by misguided outrage over the coronavirus pandemic, which began in China. Police did not release the victim's name, but several news sources named him Yao Pan Ma, a former restaurant worker who lost his job due to the pandemic and attempted to make money by collecting cans.
In an interview with the New York Post, the victim's wife, Baozhen Chen, 57, pleaded with police to identify her husband's perpetrator. Chen said in Mandarin through a translator, "Please capture him as soon as possible and make him pay."
She said that her husband is still in a coma, and she is afraid that she will be the next victim. Her fears follow a similar assault on a 65-year-old Asian American woman in the city on March 29, which resulted in her hospitalization and hate crime allegations.
Last month, an Asian woman was attacked in an apparent hate crime
A 65-year-old Asian American woman was hospitalized with severe injury in late March after a man hit, kicked, and stomped on her in a Manhattan street while yelling anti-Asian slurs. The attack was reminiscent of an attack near Times Square last month in which a woman from the Philippines was the victim.
In that assault, a parolee convicted of killing his mother almost two decades earlier was apprehended. Similar events have been reported in other cities, especially in significant Asian communities, such as San Francisco and Oakland, California.
Stop AAPI Hate, which was created last year in reaction to the intensified targeting of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders during the pandemic, announced in March that it had received accounts of nearly 3,800 Asian hate crimes in a year estimating that this was just a fraction of the actual figure.
Last week, the United States Senate passed legislation to combat the increase of hate crimes targeting members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. The bill will hasten the Justice Department's review of hate crimes and offer assistance to local law enforcement in the wake of thousands of recorded violent events in the previous year, SCMP reported.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio called the recent assault "outrageous" and promised to pursue the attacker, who is now on the run. The New York City Police Department's hate crimes task force is looking into it, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Sunday that he would steer the state's hate crimes task force to help.