An Asian man armed with a variety of weapons is believed to be responsible for a series of violent attacks on Chinese residents and international students in New Jersey’s Journal Square neighborhood.
The incidents, which occurred near the PATH subway station, appear to date back as early as February. The assailant allegedly would attack from behind with a hammer, a rock or a brick before threatening his victim with a knife.
The latest of four “strikingly similar” attacks reportedly occurred on Aug. 7. The victim, 29, was struck from behind with a hammer while walking his dog around midnight. The suspect also punched his victims on at least one occasion, such as an incident on Feb. 10, when he allegedly struck a Chinese international student in the head. Shortly after, the victim was contacted by another Chinese international student who claimed that a man fitting the same description had repeatedly stepped on her heels.
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On June 10, another student reported having a brick thrown at him by a man fitting the same description. The victim chased his assailant, but the latter threatened him with a knife.
Another student reported having a rock thrown at them on July 12. Some time later, a fifth victim reported being hit with a hammer and threatened with a knife after he chased his assailant.
The suspect remains at large. Aside from being Asian, he was described to be somewhere between 170 and 175 centimeters, “slightly overweight” and wearing a hat, mask and sneakers.
“His native tongue is English, and he seems to hate recent Asian immigrants, especially Chinese,” the Aug. 7 victim reportedly wrote on social media. “He also attacks victims with his fists, then a brick, and a hammer at the end.”
“He seems to be familiar with the streets around PATH, so he might live or work here. He usually attacks his victims at night, and attacks men from behind, women from the front.”
Jersey City police are reportedly investigating the attacks.