CHINATOWN, Manhattan — A Brooklyn man is facing multiple charges after admitting to stabbing an Asian man in Chinatown Thursday evening in an apparently unprovoked attack, according to the NYPD.
Authorities said the 36-year-old man, who lives in the neighborhood, was stabbed in the back around 6:15 p.m. near the corner of Worth Street and Baxter street, right by the federal courthouse.
Cops were called to the area after the alleged attacker walked up to a security guard at the nearby Manhattan district attorney’s office and said he had just stabbed someone, according to police.
The victim was rushed to a local hospital for treatment, where he was still listed in critical condition early Friday morning.
Police said that a butcher knife was recovered near the scene.
According to the NYPD, the man taken into custody, 23-year-old Salman Muflihi, of Bensonhurst, was arrested overnight on charges including attempted criminally negligent homicide, criminal possession of a weapon, assault, and possession of a fake ID.
Police said Muflihi has three prior arrests in New York City, most recently for an assault in late January and two others for robberies. None connected to hate crimes, they said.
The NYPD’s hate crimes task force investigated the stabbing and while they currently do not believe the incident occurred based on race or ethnicity, it is still under investigation, police said.
Hate crimes against Asian New Yorkers have been top of mind as of late, with the city and NYPD each vowing to renew focus on preventing them.
Submit tips to police by calling Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477), visiting www.nypdcrimestoppers.com, downloading the NYPD Crime Stoppers mobile app, or texting 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. Spanish-speaking callers are asked to dial 1-888-57-PISTA (74782).
PIX11’s Aliza Chasan and Cristian Benavides contributed to this report.