On Thursday, PIX 11 News reported that a 19-year-old Brooklyn resident faces several charges, including a hate crime offense, for randomly attacking a 70-year-old Sikh man visiting New York City.
"Vernon Douglas is charged with hate crime assault, robbery and aggravated harassment, the NYPD said. Douglas allegedly attacked Nirmal Singh as he walked in the Richmond Hill neighborhood in Queens on April 3. Singh suffered a broken nose and bruising from the assault," reported Finn Hoogensen. "Singh had only been in New York City for two weeks when he was attacked. He is in the United States on a visitor visa, temporarily staying at the Sikh Cultural Society in Queens. He was attacked just two blocks from the temple. "
"The South Asian community was outraged in the wake of the attack and called on police and elected officials to do more for their community," continued the report.
Hate crimes in the U.S. have been rising in recent years. Many have been attacks targeting Asian-Americans, due to an incorrect belief they brought COVID-19 to the country. President Joe Biden signed a new bill boosting federal hate crime penalties last May.