BROOKLYN — A Brooklyn man was hit with a 19-count indictment on charges he allegedly attacked two Asian women and a 77-year-old Asian man.
Joseph Russo, 29, was arraigned on hate crimes charges in connection with three attacks over the course of a month, District Attorney Eric Gonzalez said Thursday.
“Without warning or provocation, this defendant allegedly attacked three innocent strangers because of their race,” Gonzalez said. “We have no patience for hate or intolerance in Brooklyn and everyone, regardless of their race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, or religion, should feel safe to walk the streets without fear of being senselessly and violently attacked.”
Russo allegedly pushed a 64-year-old woman to the ground on March 5 near Kings Highway and West 6th Street. Several weeks later, he allegedly grabbed a 32-year-old woman’s hair as she walked on Kings Highway near East 13th Street toward a train station, dragging her to the ground.
In the last attack, Russo allegedly pushed a 77-year-old man from behind, knocking him down in front of a grocery store on Avenue U.
Russo was charged with second-degree assault, third-degree assault as a hate crime, third-degree menacing as a hate crime, aggravated harassment and other related charges. He was ordered held on bail of $50,000 cash or $100,000 bond.
If you or someone you know are experiencing anti-Asian hate, click here for resources.
Anyone who witnesses an incident can also find out more information on bystander intervention by clicking here.