By Carol Tannenhauser
A 38-year-old man, who preferred to go unnamed, was punched in the face by a stranger in Central Park last Saturday afternoon, while out with his wife and five-year-old son, he told abc7news on Thursday. He suffered two fractured bones in his check and a bloody nose. The man, who is Asian American, could not confirm that it was a hate crime, but he did say he believed his family had been “targeted.”
The incident took place at around 1 p.m. on the west side of the Lake near West 75th Street, where there is a large rock outcrop called Hernshead, popular for climbing and viewing the passing rowboats and ducks. The victim said he had noticed a man who “seemed out of place…pacing and muttering to himself.” The family “moved three times” to get away from him, but “he followed us,” the victim said, ultimately whispering something “sexual” to the woman, and cornering the family between the rock and the Lake.
“We should social distance,” the husband said to the stranger, trying to defuse the situation. “You have a mask,” the stranger responded. “That’s an advantage. You guys always have an advantage.” And then he punched him, according to the interview.
The man went to Mt. Sinai hospital of his own accord. He stated that he felt it was important to speak out. The NYPD said the attacker fled in an unknown direction, and the investigation is ongoing.
You can see the entire interview here.
Thanks to Justin for the tip.