A man pushed a transgender woman onto New York City subway tracks after he confronted her for "looking at" him, and authorities are investigating the incident as a possible hate crime, police said Wednesday. The unidentified victim, 28, told police the man was "acting erratically" Monday morning and demanded to know why she was looking at him before he attacked her at a Manhattan subway station in Greenwich Village.
Police were still looking for the attacker, the local NBC News affiliate reported. The woman was on the southbound platform waiting for the 6 train at Lafayette and Bleecker streets when he approached her, police said. "What are you looking at?" the man allegedly asked the victim before running to a nearby garbage can, retrieving an empty plastic bottle and throwing it at her. He then pushed the woman onto the tracks and ran away, police said.
NYPD Sergeant Lee Jones told several news outlets that bystanders helped pull the victim back onto the subway platform.
The woman was treated at Bellevue Hospital for cuts and bruises before being released. Surveillance video captured the episode and showed the assailant, who appeared to be a black man dressed in a light blue shirt and baggy khaki pants, fishing for the plastic bottle that he threw at the woman. The push itself was not captured on the video footage.
The issue of violence against transgender individuals has been a concern in the LGBT community for many years. The Transgender Violence Tracking Portal said 102 killings of transgender people have were logged in the first four months of 2014, the Huffington Post reported.
Ten percent of those 102 acts were committed against transgender youth, according to TVTP, which compiles reports that are submitted to its portal on a voluntary basis. The 2014 figure came from 14 countries and includes reports of transgender individuals who were shot and stabbed multiple times, beaten and burned to death, mutilated, tortured, strangled or hanged.