A man has been arrested in connection with the attack of a 61-year-old Asian immigrant in Harlem, New York.
Last Friday night, victim Yao Pan Ma was pushing a grocery cart full of bottles and cans near 125th Street and Third Avenue when he was suddenly attacked from behind and collapsed onto the sidewalk.
According to a video released by the police department, the assailant is seen stomping on Ma’s head and kicking him multiple times in the face before running away.
Reports say the incident left Ma in critical condition in a medically induced coma.
While speaking to the New York Post on Sunday, Ma’s wife Baozhen Chen — who had just come from visiting her husband at Harlem Hospital — said she fears he will not survive.
“I told our children last night,” Chen said in Cantonese through an interpreter. “They are very concerned about their father. I am very worried my husband will not make it.”
Chen added that her husband was a talented pastry chef in China — where their two children still live — and came to the U.S. two years ago for a better life. Sadly, she says that after he lost his job at a Chinese restaurant in Lower Manhattan in September, he began collecting cans to make money.
As reported by the New York Times, police say the suspect, Jarrod Powell, 49, was arrested Tuesday morning and charged with two counts of felony assault.
Though officials said the attack was being investigated as a hate crime, the police say they did not file hate-crime charges.
A spokeswoman for the district attorney’s office said, however, that Manhattan prosecutors could still bring hate-crime charges in the case.
On Monday, fashion designer Phillip Lim created an authorized GoFundMe that will help Ma’s family during this difficult time.
“I am starting this GoFundMe on Mr. Yao Pan Ma’s behalf with authority from his family,” the page read. “All funds will go directly to his family. While they will decide what to do with the funds raised, we hope it frees them from having to worry about medical bills and financial insecurity at this unimaginable time.”
As of this writing, the page has raised over $400,000.