First Virus-Related Hate Crime? Man Wearing Surgical Mask Stabs Asian In NYC

A man wearing a surgical mask stabbed an Asian man in Brooklyn, New York, more than a dozen times over the weekend, reported the New York Post

NYPD sources told The Post that the incident occurred on Saturday evening, around 8th Avenue, could be one of the first Covid-19-related hate crimes in the country. NYPD later tweeted that there was "absolutely no nexus between the attack and the coronavirus." 

Li Qianyang, 48, was walking down 8th Avenue on Saturday evening when a man wearing a surgical mask stabbed him 13 times, the police said. 

A police source told The Post that the attacker "was on top of him stabbing him." 

"One guy was chasing the other guy, and caught up with him outside," a store owner told the Post. "He stabbed him so many times, and I'm amazed he survived."

First responders found Qianyang in a pool of blood, and it was reported that the attacker stabbed him in the heart. He was immediately taken to Lutheran Medical Center and remained in critical condition. 

Video of the incident was recorded on a mobile phone, which shows how the attack played out. It appears the assailant had no interest in robbing the man but instead wanted Qianyang dead for reasons that are still unknown

If this incident were indeed a Covid-19-related hate crime, it would be the first in the country. Everyone in New York City is on edge as virus cases in the tri-state area have jumped 200% since Friday, from 49 cases to now 150.