New York City police on Saturday released photos of a man being sought in connection with an alleged anti-Asian hate crime on a Times Square-bound subway.
The suspect used anti-Asian slurs before spitting twice in the direction of an unidentified 44-year-old woman and her three children, the New York Police Department said in a statement.
“The individual then knocked the victim’s cellular phone out of her hand and proceeded to kick it out of the back door of the subway car, onto the tracks as the train was still moving,” the NYPD said.
The man got off the train at a nearby stop and headed west, the department said. The woman was stabilized at a hospital after suffering unspecified injuries, police said.
The department indicated the man could face hate crime allegations.
The attack is among several across the nation in which Asian Americans appear to have been targeted as a result of their heritage.
Last month, the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino, found that hate crimes against Asian Americans in the country’s largest cities skyrocketed 150 percent in 2020.
Experts have tied the increase to former President Donald Trump’s incendiary rhetoric blaming China for the coronavirus pandemic.
Michelle Acevedo contributed.