Susan Lee, who is running for City Council in Lower Manhattan’s District 1, has recently taken to social media to share details about an incident at a subway station.
The 42-year-old City Council candidate told the New York Post last Thursday that she noticed a woman staring at her while she was walking down a flight of stairs at the World Trade Center Station on Feb. 17.
“You know she has this mischievous look on her face, and I was just thinking like, ‘Oh gosh, this isn’t good,’” Lee said.
“If I wasn’t prepared for her to push me, I would have fallen all the way down the stairs,” she added. “I was holding on to the rail really tightly and I had my other hand in front of my face.”
Lee suffered a sprained ankle from the attack. She was alone at the time, potentially making her an easy target for her suspect, who she said appeared to be homeless. Lee is unsure of whether the attack was racially motivated.
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In a press release Lee posted on Instagram on Tuesday, she shared that campaigning “in the era of COVID-19 isn’t easy. However, what I was not prepared for was the danger and harassment I experience every day on the campus trail.”
“Since the beginning of 2021, in NYC,” she added, “23 anti-Asian hate crimes have been reported, compared to 29 during all of 2020. Campaigning during a pandemic is difficult, but to add the fear of injury or worse because of the way I look was something I never contemplated or considered.”
Lee’s colleagues and family convinced her to report the incident to the police, which she did 10 days later. Authorities have not been able to identify and locate the suspect as of this writing.
This incident is one of the many recent attacks that have involved Asian Americans in New York. The city’s officials have launched an all-Asian undercover team of officers to patrol the streets.
Community members have also organized patrol groups in Flushing, Queens to deter any further attacks.
Feature Image via @susanleenyc