New York City police released photos Saturday of a man wanted in connection with an alleged anti-Asian hate crime on a subway bound for Times Square.
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 person then took the cell phone out of the victim’s hand and proceeded to kick it out the back door of the subway car, onto the tracks while the train was still moving,” the New York Police Department said.
The man got off the train at a nearby stop and headed west, the department said. The woman was stabilized in a hospital after sustaining unspecified injuries, police said.
The department said the man could face hate crime charges.
The attack is among several across the country 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 nation’s largest cities soared 150 percent in 2020.
Experts have linked the rise to inflammatory rhetoric from former President Donald Trump who blames China for the coronavirus pandemic.
Michelle acevedo contributed.