Two weeks after the massacre of eight people — including six Asian women — in Atlanta, GA, violence against Asian-Americans is still a massive, ongoing problem. The latest, horrific example was an attack on a 65-year-old woman in midtown Manhattan in broad daylight, during which bystanders failed to intervene.
According to law enforcement, the attack happened around 11:40 a.m. Monday outside an apartment building a couple of blocks from Times Square. Surveillance footage released by police shows an unidentified man attacking the woman as they pass by each other on the street. After the assailant kicks her in the stomach, she falls to the ground, and then he repeatedly kicks her in the upper body and head before walking off. Police say the man also shouted anti-Asian insults at the woman.
Two people who appear to work in the building are seen in the video witnessing the attack and not stepping in. Instead, one of them appears to close the door after the attacker takes off, leaving the woman on the ground. The Brodsky Organization, the building’s management company, released a statement saying that the staff members in the security footage have been suspended “pending an investigation in conjunction with their union.” The woman, who has not been identified, was hospitalized with what the police described as serious injuries, and was in stable condition as of Tuesday.
The New York Police Department’s hate crimes task force is asking for the public’s help in identifying the attacker. A warning to anyone watching the video, which is linked here: The footage is graphic.
At a news conference on Tuesday morning, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio said that the video of the attack was “absolutely disgusting and outrageous,” adding that it was “absolutely unacceptable” that no one helped the woman.
“I don’t care who you are, I don’t care what you do, you’ve got to help your fellow New Yorker,” said de Blasio.
The Manhattan attack is the latest in a yearlong surge of anti-Asian violence across the country that has been linked in part to misplaced blame for the coronavirus and former President Donald Trump’s use of racist terms like “China virus.” The NYPD has seen at least 33 hate crimes against Asian-Americans so far this year, reports the Associated Press. Across the country, more than 3,795 hate incidents have been reported to Stop AAPI Hate, an organization that tracks incidents of discrimination, hate, and xenophobia against Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders in the U.S., during the past year.