Prosecutors Saturday in New York overruled police and decided not to file a hate crime charge in the stabbing on Thursday in Chinatown.
ABC7 reports 23-year-old Salman Muflihi appeared in court Saturday to face charges of second-degree attempted murder, first- and second-degree assault, and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
Authorities appear to struggle with whether to tack on a hate crime charge. The NYPD Asian Hate Crime Task Force declared Thursday night that they found no evidence of a hate crime. However, by Friday, police told CBS News a hate crime charge would be filed. Saturday, prosecutors declared they would not.
Investigators told ABC they have no evidence the attacker actually saw the victim’s face prior to the attack.
According to ABC7 Mulflihi ran to a security guard outside the District Attorney’s office declaring “I just stabbed someone…because he didn’t like the way he looked at him.
“I stabbed that guy. If he dies, he dies. I don’t give a f–k.”
Thursday’s attack follows a rash of violent crimes against elderly Asian victims in both California and New York.
“I’ve already been trying to deal and grapple with the fact that our elderly community has been targeted, but to now recognize that this really could happen to anybody,” said Jennifer Tam of Welcome to Chinatown.
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