Man Arrested In San Francisco Stabbing Of 2 Asian Women : NPR

Protesters held a rally in San Francisco’s Embarcadero Plaza in March to show solidarity with Asian Americans who were recently victims of hate crimes in the United States. Justin Sullivan / Getty Images Hide caption

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Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Protesters held a rally in San Francisco’s Embarcadero Plaza in March to show solidarity with Asian Americans who were recently victims of hate crimes in the United States.

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Two elderly Asian women were stabbed to death Tuesday while waiting for a bus in downtown San Francisco. The attack comes amid a spate of anti-Asian violence in the country since the pandemic began.

The women, aged 84 and 63, are both staying in hospital and being treated by the San Francisco Police Department for multiple stab wounds said in a press release on Wednesday. None of the women are in critical condition.

The SFPD arrested 54-year-old Patrick Thompson around 7 p.m., two hours after he allegedly stabbed the two women. Police say he faces two charges of attempted murder and two charges of molesting the elderly.

Investigators have not yet classified the attack as a hate crime, but say they are investigating whether the suspect was motivated by racial prejudice.

Patricia Lee told a local ABC television station that she was working on a flower stand near the bus station when she witnessed the incident. “It was a pretty big knife, it had knuckles on the handle and the blade had holes in it like a military knife,” she said.

The attack follows a recent surge in hate crimes against Asian Americans in the Bay Area and nationwide during the coronavirus pandemic. From March 2020 through last February, Stop AAPI Hate – a nonprofit that prosecutes abuse against Asian Americans and islanders in the Pacific – was documented nearby 3,780 hate incidents. The total number of anti-Asian crimes could be much higher.

In New York, a police hate crime task force is investigating a Sunday attack on two Asian women in midtown Manhattan. Police said another woman spoke to the coupleasked them to take off their masks and hit one of the women in the head with a hammer.

The incident followed NYPD arrest last week a man charged with hate crimes and attempted murder in connection with a brutal attack that left a 61-year-old Asian man in critical condition. The surveillance video released by the police showed the suspect pushing the victim to the ground before kicking him in the head several times.

Anger and Fear as Asian American Seniors in Bay Area attacks

Many activists accuse xenophobic rhetoric and violence against Asia Use of racist language by former President Donald Trump and others to describe the coronavirus.

Matt Haney, San Francisco supervisor representing the district where the last attack took place, shared a link to a GoFundMe for the 85-year-old victim allegedly set up by her grandchildren.

Victoria Eng updated the page on Wednesday to say her grandmother is recovering well after surgery.

“These Asian hate crimes need to stop,” she wrote. “San Francisco is my home and my grandmother’s home. We need to feel safe where we live and not in constant fear.”

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