A homeless man accused of attacking a 65-year-old Asian-American woman in New York City on Monday was on parole for killing his mother.
The man, Brandon Elliot, 38, was arrested and faces multiple charges, including felony assault as a hate crime, separate assault and attempted assault, and attempted assault as a hate crime, the New York Times reported.
Elliot was living at a Midtown Manhattan hotel serving as a homeless shelter when police said he was caught on surveillance footage punching and kicking Vilma Kari, 65, who was walking down the street Monday morning in front of an apartment building.
The video provided by NYPD CrimeStoppers showed the man kicking Kari in the chest outside the apartment building. After she collapsed on the sidewalk, the suspect then kicked her repeatedly in the head.
WANTED in connection to an assault. On Monday, March 29th at 11:40 AM, at 360 West 43rd St, a female, 65, was approached by an unidentified male who punched and kicked her about the body and made anti-Asian statements. Have Info? Call or DM☎️1-800-577-TIPS. Up to $2500 reward. pic.twitter.com/6gb5NDCZCA
— NYPD Crime Stoppers (@NYPDTips) March 30, 2021
A police official said the man then started swearing and said, “You don’t belong here.”
Several apartment building workers in the lobby who witnessed the event watched but appeared to do nothing to intervene.
The building’s management company, The Brodsky Organization, said the employees who saw the attack were suspended pending the outcome of an investigation.
Kyle Bragg, the president of the union representing staff members, issued a statement saying the staff had immediately called for help and urged people “to avoid a rush to judgement” until the investigation was over.
A group of tenants from the building issued a statement Wednesday in support of the employees, saying the security footage released by the police did not accurately show the extent of the staff’s response.
“Upon review of the FULL video-recorded incident, we do not believe the 360 West doormen staff have failed us as residents, our Midtown Manhattan community, nor our fellow AAPI New Yorkers,” the statement said.
Kari received treatment for her injuries at NYU Langone Hospital and was released Tuesday evening, hospital officials said.