Pregnant Asian Woman With Daughter Attacked in Philadelphia
A pregnant Asian American woman and her young daughter were allegedly attacked by a female panhandler in Philadelphia last week.
Verbal and physical: Philadelphia police are tracking down the suspect who punched a pregnant woman and called her slurs in front of her 12-year-old daughter, WPVI reports.
According to Jing Chen, she was walking with her daughter along 13th and Walnut Street last week when the incident happened.
The stranger reportedly appeared out of nowhere and started spraying them with water. When Chen asked the woman why she did this, she responded by saying, “You (expletive), Chinese (expletive).”
“So, I, as a mom said, ‘You too!’ She went back to me in front of my face and I asked her, ‘What you gonna do I’m pregnant, are you going to hurt me?'” Chen recalled.
The suspect, identified as Delores Marte, then looked at Chen’s belly before saying “So what?” and then punched her on the face.
Chen has since warned other Chinese American families in their area about her attacker via a community WeChat group.
“What happened last week, I haven’t left the house since yesterday. As soon as I went out of the house, I ran into her and it made me feel like, I’m so scared,” she said.
Not a hate crime: While the local authorities are currently not considering the case as a hate crime, others think otherwise.
Chinatown Disability Advocacy Project’s Anna Perng says the attack was intentional and the suspect mentioned Chen’s race as an insult.
“The assailant deliberately crossed the street and singled them out and then mentioned race during the attack,” said Perng.
If caught, Marte will be charged with simple assault, recklessly endangering another person and harassment.
The DA’s office released a statement acknowledging possible additional charges following an investigation.
“This is an active investigation and we have not ruled out additional charges, but there is not sufficient evidence that has been presented to us that this is a case of ethnic intimidation at this time,” the statement read.
Philadelphia Chinatown Development Corporation executive director John Chin said: “I think just being in this environment of COVID-19, there’s a really heightened fear and concern about anti-Asian sentiment.”
Local advocates in Philadelphia’s Asian community are now seeking a meeting with city leaders to address the racial issue that many believe has been ongoing.
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