Manhattan man arrested for vicious attack on Asian woman

Asian American woman assaulted on NYC street as bystanders do nothing

Another week, another horrific viral video showing a brutal attack: This time, in New York City, NYPD released a video of 65-year-old Vilma Kari being kicked in the stomach and stomped on the head by Brandon Elliot in an unprovoked attack in the middle of the day in midtown Manhattan.

As reported by the New York Post, Elliot lives in a nearby hotel that serves as a homeless shelter. He was serving time after he was convicted of fatally stabbing his mother in 2002.

Elliot was reportedly on lifetime parole after being released from prison in 2019.

According to police, Elliot now faces charges of assault as a hate crime, attempted assault as a hate crime, assault and attempted assault in Monday's attack.

The New York Times has identified her as Vilma Kari, who immigrated to the US from the Philippines several decades ago.

Surveillance video from the building on West 43rd Street in midtown Manhattan also showed the attacker stomping on the woman's head after she falls to the ground.

The woman, whose name has not been made public, was discharged from the hospital Tuesday after being treated for serious injuries, a hospital spokesperson said.

"If you see someone being attacked, do whatever you can", he said. The workers' union said the staff members had called for help immediately. "Solutions best come from community, and leaders outlined additional steps that we can take to best support the safety, community, and mental health needs of those in our community and impacted by acts of hate and bias".

The attack comes amid a national spike in anti-Asian hate crimes, and happened just weeks after a mass shooting in Atlanta that left eight people dead, six of them women of Asian descent. There were 11 such attacks by the same time past year. That sentiment was further spread by former President Donald Trump, who often used racially-charged terms to describe the virus.

He called Monday's attack "disgusting", telling TV station NY1: "I don't know who attacks a 65-year-old woman and leaves her on the street like that".

This year in New York City there have been 33 hate crimes with an Asian victim as of Sunday, police said.

The NYPD's Hate Crime Task Force is investigating the attack, the department said.

US President Joe Biden has deplored the surge in anti-Asian violence, saying last week that "hate can have no safe harbour in America". They contend that a video clip focusing on the suspect and the assault was "unfortunately cut to inadvertently exclude the compassionate action" taken by the staff, which they said included giving the victim aid and alerting medics.

He is not suspected in Monday's attack.

Just last week, Police Commissioner Dermot Shea announced it was beefing up its task force to include plainclothes officers being deployed in teams "to prevent New Yorkers from becoming victims in the first place". Both incidents are believed to have occurred on Monday.

Stop AAPI Hate, an advocacy group, reported almost 4,000 instances of hate instances against Asian Americans in the US between March 2020 and February 2021 - more than 10 a day. Stop AAPI Hate, a hate crimes watchdog, has said they have received more than 2,800 reports of firsthand experiences with racism from Asians and Asian Americans since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.



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