By Amir Vera and Rob Frehse, CNN
Two black girls have been charged with hate crimes after the New York Police Department said they assaulted a white woman and made “anti-white” statements, according to a press release released Tuesday by the NYPD.
The incident took place on July 9 at around 6:50 p.m. on a southbound MTA bus in Queens when three girls and the victim, a 57-year-old white woman, engaged in a “verbal argument”, said an NYPD spokesperson. One of the girls shouted, “I hate white people. I hate the way they talk,” according to CNN affiliate WCBS-TV.
The woman was hit in the head with an unknown object, the statement said, causing a laceration and hemorrhage.
The three girls fled and the woman was taken to a local hospital where she received three staples to the head, the statement said.
NYPD posted a photo of three black teenagers wanted in connection with the incident and two of them – aged 15 and 16 – have been arrested and charged with hate crimes. The police are still looking for the third girl.
The Queens District Attorney’s Office will ultimately decide what charges the teens will face.
The charges against the girls come as hate crimes in New York City reportedly rose 76% in April compared to the same period last year, according to data from the NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force. . To date, 35 hate crimes have been committed against black people in the city, 51 against Asians, 149 against Jews and only one recorded against a white person, according to the NYPD Hate Crimes Dashboard.
For the 2021 calendar year, 19 hate crimes were committed against white people, according to the dashboard.
Hate crimes are defined by the United States Department of Justice as bias-motivated crimes. The DOJ clarifies that “hate” does not mean anger or dislike – but rather prejudice against people with specific characteristics like race, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, religion or nationality. disability.
The “crime” part is often violent, like assault or murder. Property damage, threats to commit the crime or even conspiracy to commit the crime also qualify.
In New York, a number of hate crimes have taken place recently – including an incident where a man punched an Asian woman more than 100 times earlier this month and another in which a woman allegedly made anti- -Asians and doused four people. .
In recent years, those charged with hate crimes have included the shooter in the Buffalo shooting that killed 10 black people, the shooter in the Atlanta spa shooting that killed eight (including six Asian women) and the shooter in the El Paso, Texas, shooting that left 22 dead in the predominantly Latino city.
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CNN’s Laura Studley, Emma Tucker, Maria Morava and writer Saba Hamedy contributed to this report.