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Asian American community leaders were demanding action Monday, saying it’s unacceptable for members of their community to live in fear — risking their lives just by walking down the street. 

The calls for change come after a 36-year-old Asian man was stabbed in his back in an unprovoked attack seen on surveillance video.

Friday, the NYPD added an attempted murder as a hate crime charge against Salman Muflihi, given the 23 year old’s prior arrest for punching an Asian man in the head last month. But the Manhattan District Attorney dropped the hate crime charge.

Lee and others spoke out against that choice.

The DA says there’s no evidence Muflihi saw the victims face. The victim was wearing a mask and a hat. Sources said Muflihi’s statements to detectives contradict that account.

Since the start of the pandemic more Asian Americans across the country have been a target for hate.

What makes a crime a hate crime? The Manhattan District Attorney said a hate crime is a criminal act that targets a victim based solely on their actual or perceived: race, color, national origin, gender, religion, ag, disability or sexual orientation.