San Francisco police are looking for a man who kicked a 79-year-old Indonesian woman in the stomach on a Muni bus earlier this month.
The incident reportedly occurred on the morning of Dec. 3 as the victim, identified only as Lisa, boarded the 38 bus at Geary and Laguna on her way to work at Oracle Park.
In an exclusive interview with ABC7 News anchor Dion Lim, Lisa described how it all happened in a matter of seconds.
“I get in the bus, need to scan my Clipper. I saw him standing up — he kicked me with his foot. In the stomach,” she told Lim.
The suspect remained at large as of Tuesday. So far, police have not found evidence that the incident was a hate crime.
A daily dose of Asian America's essential stories, in under 5 minutes.
Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories to your inbox daily for free.
Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive.
For about 30 years, Lisa has worked in concessions for the Giants, 49ers and Warriors, Lim reported.
Lisa is back to riding the bus. But her trip now includes praying to God that she “get home safe.”
Despite a decrease in ridership due to COVID-19, assaults on Muni buses and trains have continued. Last year, the agency recorded 32 reports of aggravated assault and 155 reports of battery, up from 29 and 45 in 2020, respectively, as per the San Francisco Standard.
Older commuters like Lisa who rely heavily on the transport system are especially at risk. Muni patrons aged 65 and above have been reported to average more than 700,000 rides a month.
“As an Asian American, I don’t feel safe,” Wayne Yee, 57, told San Francisco Senior Beat in April. “I won’t ride when there aren’t many people around, and I tell that to my wife and daughter.” Last week, 23-year-old Ilasa Faalogoifo was charged with murder, assault with a deadly weapon and weapons violations in connection with a fatal shooting on a Muni bus on Aug. 3, KRON 4 reported. “The crimes that Faalogoifo is accused of are horrifying and are examples of why I am doing everything in my power to restore public safety for our residents,” District Attorney Brooke Jenkins said in a statement. “Passengers and operators should not have to fear for their lives when riding public transportation. I want to commend the San Francisco Police Department’s Homicide Investigators and Daly City Police Department for their work to develop a strong case and bring Faalogoifo out of hiding so that he can be held accountable.”