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An Asian man was punched in the face on the Lower East Side by a homeless man who spewed obscenities in an unprovoked attack the NYPD has deemed a possible hate crime, cops said.

The unsuspecting victim parked his car in front of 196 Allen St., near Houston Street, around 9 a.m. and was checking to make sure he was in a legal spot when the attack occurred, an NYPD spokesman said.

There was a language barrier, but the victim told police he heard the attacker say the word “Chinese” several times, cops said.

The attacker ran down Allen Street.

The NYPD spokesman said the incident is being considered a possible hate crime, and the NYPD Asian Hate Crimes Task Force is now investigating. A police source said cops believe the attacker was homeless because he was carrying a blanket.

Kat Lam, 30, told The Post she was picking up her morning coffee with her roommate, on the corner of Allen between Stanton and Houston streets, when she witnessed the end of the incident.

NYPD officers speaking to a witness who called 911 and the victim of a seemingly random assault. William Farrington for NY Post

Lam described the assailant as tall and slim, in his mid-to-late 20s, wearing a brown sweatshirt, carrying a blanket.

“The homeless man started charging after the elderly gentleman, saying things like, ‘If I ever see you around here again, I’m gonna beat your ass.’ And, ‘I’m just going to beat your ass right now,’” Lam recalled. “He just socked him right in the face, right above the eye. You could tell that this older man was in complete shock. He was just frozen.”

The attacker ran off when he realized there were witnesses, Lam said. 

An NYPD spokesman said the incident is being considered a possible hate crime.William Farrington for NY Post

The police responded “very quickly” to the incident, said Lam, who added the attack was “just completely unwarranted.”

“It was hard to not get emotional because he looked exactly like my dad,” she said through tears.

EMS with a man on Allen Street between Stanton and Houston streets on March 20, 2021.William Farrington for NY Post

The assault came the morning after Mayor de Blasio was heckled and swarmed by protesters at a Union Square vigil held to protest anti-Asian racism and mourn the victims of the Georgia massage parlor shootings.

The NYPD has recorded a 1,300 percent increase in anti-Asian hate crimes during the coronavirus pandemic and has stepped up patrols in Asian neighborhoods following the massage parlor murders.

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Tags: massage parlor houston street the nypd the nypd the attacker homeless man allen street in the face

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Police: Man killed himself after ramming US Capitol barrier


WASHINGTON (AP) — A man drove his car into a barricade near the U.S. Capitol early Sunday and then began firing gunshots in the air before fatally shooting himself, according to police, who said he did not seem to be targeting any member of Congress.

The incident happened just before 4 a.m. at a vehicle barricade set at East Capitol Street NE and 2nd Street SE in Washington.

It comes at a time when law enforcement authorities across the country are facing an increasing number of threats and federal officials have warned about the potential of violent attacks on government buildings in the days since the FBI’s search of former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida.

The attack is reminiscent of an incident when a man drove a vehicle into two Capitol Police officers at a checkpoint in April 2021, killing an 18-year veteran of the force. And many on Capitol Hill remain on edge after supporters of the then-president stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.

Authorities said the man, whose identity has not been released, crashed into the barricade and that as he was getting out of the car, the vehicle became engulfed in flames. The man then opened fire, firing several shots into the air as police approached.

Capitol Police said the man shot himself as the officers neared. He was later pronounced dead.

Capitol Police Chief Tom Manger said officers did not hear the man say anything before he opened fire “indiscriminately” in the street with a handgun and walked toward the Capitol building. Authorities are investigating whether the man may have set his car on fire, the chief said, because the collision did not appear to cause the blaze.

Police officers at the scene saw the man fatally shoot himself as they approached, Manger said.

Investigators located addresses for the man in Delaware and Pennsylvania and have learned he had a criminal history in the past decade, though his motive remained unclear and he had no links to the Capitol, Manger said.

“We don’t have any information that would indicate his motivation at this point,” Manger said.

Police said “it does not appear the man was targeting any member of Congress” and that investigators are examining the man’s background as they work to try to discern a motive. Both the House and Senate are in recess and very few staff members work in the Capitol complex at that hour.

Authorities said no other injuries were reported and police do not believe any officers returned fire.

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