Vincent Diehl charged with hate crime after hitting Asian woman in an unprovoked attack and telling her to ‘go back to your country’ in Manhattan.
A man who assaulted an Asian woman in an unprovoked ‘random’ attack was arrested on Tuesday and charged with a hate crime after hitting the victim in the face in Manhattan over the weekend, police said.
Vincent Diehl, 47, is accused of punching the 52-year-old woman in the face and screaming ‘go back to your country’ near the intersection of First Avenue and East 18th Street in Stuyvesant Town at about 1:30 p.m. Sunday, the nypost reported, citing police.
At the time of the incident, the woman who was walking with two children, complained of pain, but refused medical attention at the scene, sources said.
Following the ‘unprovoked’ attack, the suspect ran away, before his eventual arrest on Tuesday.
Diehl was charged with assault as a hate crime and aggravated harassment, police said.
Rising trend of violence towards Asian Americans
Police declined to say what led to Diel targeting the Asian woman and assaulting her.
The incident follows a general rising trend of violence towards Asian Americans across the US off the back of anti Asian rhetoric following the onset of the pandemic.
Stop AAPI Hate has recorded nearly 9,081 hate incidents involving Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders nationwide since the beginning of the pandemic. Of all incident reports, 4,548 hate incidents occurred in 2020 and 4,533 of hate incidents occurred up to June, 2021.
A study of 16 US cities by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino found a 164% increase in hate crimes reported to police from 36 cases to 95 in the first quarter of 2021 when compared with the same period in 2020. The cities with the most cases of hate crimes against Asian Americans are New York and Los Angeles.