An Asian woman was forced to undergo brain surgery over the weekend after she and her son were dragged down the stairs of a New York City subway station in an attempted robbery.
The unidentified 58-year-old woman and her 23-year-old son were walking up the stairs of the Canal Street subway station just before 11:00 a.m. Saturday when they were attacked from behind, with one assailant reportedly grabbing the son’s backpack, according to the New York Daily News. The son then attempted to grab his mother as he fell, sending them both tumbling down the flight of stairs.
While the son was not injured in the fall, his mother suffered multiple blows to the head during the fall and was critically injured. The attempted thief reportedly then fled the station. The suspect remains at large.
Both victims were transported to Bellevue Hospital, the local outlet reported, where the woman underwent brain surgery.
Authorities are reportedly investigating whether the crime may have been racially motivated amid a rise of hate crimes against Asians over the last year.
New York City has seen a large spike in unprovoked attacks against Asians, reporting 28 such attacks in 2020 after seeing only three in 2019. That number has increased even more in 2021, with 42 such incidents reported in the first quarter of the year.
But some activists say that number does not truly characterize the rise in Asian hate, with “Stop AAPI Hate" tracking over 3,000 incidents of harassment against Asians and Pacific Islanders since the start of the pandemic. The group said 260 of those incidents occurred in New York City.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio formed a New York Police Department task force in November aimed at stopping the rise of such crimes in the city, creating a website to help people report and respond to attacks on Asians in the city.
“If you dare to raise your hand against a member of our Asian communities, you will suffer the consequences,” de Blasio said when announcing the task force.
The New York Police Department did not immediately respond to the Washington Examiner's request for comment.
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Original Author: Michael Lee