The 31-year-old FIT graduate was walking with a friend on the subway when she was attacked. The two men thought it would be safer for them to go together.
The suspect hit the Asian woman on the head with the hammer, and the victim collapsed and dropped the bottle of wine she was carrying.
His blood was washed away, but this wine still stains the sidewalk.
VIDEO | Police released surveillance footage of the wanted suspect:
The frightened victims managed to disarm the attacker and run for help.
The victim, who only wants to be identified by her first name Theresa, says her physical pain doesn’t compare to psychological scars. She is shaken, traumatized and in total shock.
Theresa first said that she had tried to defend herself, but when she touched her head she realized that there was a lot of blood.
It was a perfect evening for alfresco dining in Hell’s Kitchen, interrupted by unprovoked violence. This happened around 8:40 p.m. on West 42nd Street, as customers were enjoying the good weather.
“One person came over and hit another person in the head with a hammer,” said cafe owner Steve Olsen. “And there was blood everywhere.”
The Citizen App video shows a customer dining al fresco who described the horrific random attack.
“A drunken woman hit them with a hammer in the head,” said the witness. “The executioner, the young man and his girlfriend were walking on the sidewalk and she just came screaming and hit them on the head. I saw it happen, with a hammer. She’s been gone a long time ago.”
Olsen said stunned customers rushed to the victim’s aid, hugged her, made her sit down and washed her. She would have been speechless and in shock.
Police said the victim did not know her attacker and the suspect told her to remove her mask before hitting her with the hammer, cutting her on the side of the head.
“She was talking to herself, like she was talking to a wall, I thought maybe she was drunk or something, so we just wanted to walk through her quickly and when I walked through her she us. saw them and said ‘Take off your f ** * mask, which is shocking, said Theresa. “Suddenly I felt my head hit by something.”
She was rushed to hospital and was said to be stable. She sustained a gash on her forehead – a deep wound on the left side of her head – and needed seven stitches.
Theresa came to New York in 2019 for her Masters at FIT.
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She went to Taiwan to stay with her parents during COVID and returned last month to start looking for work. Her parents were concerned about anti-Asian violence.
“My mom actually told me please be careful there is a lot of Asian crime in America,” Theresa said.
Theresa has just spoken with her mother and will be returning to Taiwan for the time being. She said if the right job presented itself, she would come back to New York when it was safer.
Mayor Bill de Blasio called on New Yorkers to show solidarity with Asian Americans.
“If anyone commits an act of violence or bias against Asian New Yorkers, they will suffer the consequences,” he said. “And that’s what we do every day, to make sure that no offense happens without the right follow-up and the right consequences.”
Authorities say the suspect is around 5ft 9in and wearing all black. The incident is being investigated as a possible hate crime.
Meanwhile, business owners say Hell’s Kitchen bears his name every day – and it’s demoralizing.
“Since COVID, this stuff has crept up,” Olsen said. “It’s as bad as ever in the mid / late 1970s.”
Police report a 400% increase in hate crimes against Asians compared to the same period last year.
READ ALSO | Suspect arrested in vicious, unprovoked assault on Asian man in Manhattan
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