Police say 38-year-old Brandon Elliot is the man seen punching and kicking the victim in a video that has made national headlines.
- That suspect, 38-year-old Brandon Elliot, is set to appear in court at any moment.
- Police say Elliot is the man seen on video repeatedly punching and kicking a 65-year-old Asian-American woman who was on her way to church. Eyewitness News reporter Mike Marza live at the court in lower Manhattan. Mike.
MIKE MARZA: Sure, Lena. Joe, police say the accused attacker was staying in a hotel that had been turned into a homeless shelter just a few blocks from the scene of this attack, and was just released from prison for murdering his mother just 16 months ago.
Police say this is 39-year-old Brandon Elliot seen in security video assaulting a 65-year-old Asian-American woman, yelling anti-Asian slurs. The attack happened as she was walking to church Monday afternoon on 43rd street near 9th Avenue. Police busted Elliot overnight, staking out a nearby hotel that's being used as a homeless shelter. He's on lifetime parole after serving 17 years in state prison for murdering his mother in the Bronx, stabbing her to death in 2002 in front of his five-year-old sister. He was released just 16 months ago. Mayor de Blasio has faced cries from residents and neighborhoods concerned about hotels being turned into shelters.
BILL DE BLASIO: We are going to have all the agencies work together to address these issues.
MIKE MARZA: Elliot was first arrested in July of 2000 for assaulting his mother in a fight over money when he was 17 years old. Police say he choked her and stole her jewelry. Several people in the area of Monday's assault called the tips hotline, identifying him as living in the hotel.
SHIRLEY NG: Did he received any mental health assistance to kind of reform him, or to help him realize what's right and what's wrong? And obviously, something failed.
MIKE MARZA: The worker seen on video at the apartment building that captured the assault-- who shut the door and didn't intervene-- had been suspended. The 65-year-old victim is Filipino-American. She was released from the hospital, now recovering from injuries including a broken pelvis. She is the latest victim in the wave of anti Asian-American crimes. There have been at least 33 crimes against Asian-Americans so far in New York City, compared to 29 in all of last year.
BARBARA YAU: I think that this city has done a horrible job at assessing and treating people. And at the same time, people need to be safe.
MIKE MARZA: Just last week, the NYPD's Asian-American hate crimes task force just announced some new initiatives in a way to combat some of these upticks in what they're seeing as far as crime-- including adding undercover officers on the streets, and two more detectives to the force. We expect to hear from them during an NYPD briefing that is set for a couple of hours.