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Suspect wanted in attack on elderly woman in Honolulu

An attack on an elderly woman walking in Honolulu’s Chinatown came out of nowhere, Hawaii News Now reports. Violet Hoi had just finished her lunch when a man physically assaulted her and grabbed her purse last Friday. 

The Honolulu Police are asking the public for help in finding the suspect, who left head and back injuries on the victim, according to Hawaii News Now. 

“He punch me, push me down on the ground very strongly,” Hoi said, Hawaii News Now reports. “I tried to ask someone to help, but nobody come out and then I run and he just point and finally, I couldn’t get him.”

While Hoi still feels safe returning to Chinatown, her family members, including her son Herman Hoi, are discouraging it for now. Herman said his wife ‘broke down in tears’ when they found out what happened.

“It definitely was not a good feeling for the first five minutes after getting that call,” Hermain said, Hawaii News Now reports. “My mother, she has a positive attitude and I think she really believes in the goodness of the people. It’s not gonna stop her…but at the same time, we’re gonna really maybe help her plan ahead and go to different places where there’s more people.”

While it’s unclear whether the attack was racially motivated, an uptick of hate incidents against elderly Asian victims have occurred throughout the pandemic, ranging from verbal abuse to physical assault.  

More recently, an 89-year-old woman was set on fire in Brooklyn in mid-July. As AsAmNews previously reported, two 13-year-old suspects were arrested for the crime and charged with third-degree assault on Sept. 8. 

The victim said the pair slapped her on the face before she felt a ‘sharp pain on her back,’ ABC 7 reports. Realizing that the pain came from flames, she pulled up her hair and rubbed her back against a wall to extinguish the fire. 

“The fire left a large scorch mark up the back of [the victim’s] shirt,” ABC7 reports.

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