A man has been charged with a hate crime in New York after threatening an undercover Asian police officer and telling him to “go back to China.”
The incident occurred on an escalator going into Penn Station near 7th Avenue and 32nd Street on Friday.
Juvian Rodriguez, 35, allegedly told the officer in plain clothes to “go back to China before you end up in the (expletive) graveyard.”
The suspect then threatened to stab the officer’s face.
35YO Juvian Rodriguez arrested inside Penn Station after he allegedly threatened to stab undercover Asian cop (part of @NYPDHateCrimes) in the face. Allegedly said “go back to China before you end up in the (expletive) graveyard.” Charges: harassment & menacing as hate crimes. pic.twitter.com/4B9Dr2r4sZ
— CeFaan Kim (@CeFaanKim) April 10, 2021
Rodriguez was arrested at around 1:20 p.m. inside Penn Station.
He was charged on Saturday with aggravated harassment based on race or religion, menacing as a hate crime, criminal possession of a controlled substance and harassment as a hate crime, according to WABC.
This is the second arrest in just two weeks by the city’s new team of undercover Asian police officers, who were deployed to address the rise in anti-Asian violence.
“The next person you target whether it’s through speech, menacing activity — or anything else. Walking along a sidewalk or on a train platform may be a plainclothes NYC Police officer. So think twice,” New York City Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said.
Undercover Asian officers are working in areas that have had hate crimes to address the issue. Yesterday, one of those officers was able to step in & make an arrest during an anti-Asian incident in the @NYPD5Pct, marking the first arrest by this new initiative. pic.twitter.com/RVMtSjIuyG
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) April 7, 2021
Earlier last week, Sharon Williams, 50, was arrested after yelling racist comments at nail salon employees in Manhattan, where an undercover officer was present.
Rodriguez is on supervised release due to New York’s bail reform law, which states that attacks without injury are exempt from bail — even if they were motivated by gender, race, religion, disability or sexual orientation.
“This is the revolving door justice system,” Michael Alcazar, a retired NYPD detective, told the New York Post. “The plain-clothes officers are out there doing their jobs to get the criminal element off the streets. But we hit this roadblock as usual, where we arrest them, charge them, and then in this case — despite a lengthy rap sheet — the suspect is free to roam.”
Rodriguez returns to court next month.
Feature Image Screenshots via CeFaan Kim