New York police arrest man over attack on Asian woman in hate crime case

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: New York City Police Department (NYPD) poster after alleged assault attack on Asian woman in New York

By Maria Ponnezhath

(Reuters) – Police have arrested a man suspected of attacking an elderly Asian woman in New York City and charged him with felony assault as a hate crime, the police department said.

Police identified the suspect as Brandon Elliot, 38, who was already on lifetime parole for murdering his mother, the New York Police Department said in a statement to Reuters. Elliot was arrested and charged early on Wednesday.

The NYPD’s Hate Crimes Force had been looking for the assailant since Monday afternoon, after a man punched and kicked a 65-year-old woman, knocked her to the ground and stamped at least three times on her head. He also made anti-Asian statements.

Videos posted on social media showed witnesses at the scene did not try to protect her and one man shut the door of a nearby building while the attacker casually walked away.

The police also confirmed that the victim sustained a serious physical injury.

The incident, which happened on a street in midtown Manhattan, is one among many rising hate crimes against Asian Americans. Such crimes rose by 149% in 2020 in 16 major cities compared with 2019, according to the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism.

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