The appearance was viewed by a judge and lawyers in a courtroom in Lower Manhattan.
Prosecutors told the judge that Simon Martial, 61, confessed to the Saturday shoving death of Michelle Go, 40.
Prosecutors said they are still investigating to determine if this incident was a bias crime.
But when challenged by Martial's defense attorney to turn over any evidence of bias, prosecutors said they did not have any.
The judge ordered Martial to undergo a psychiatric evaluation.
Toward the end of the arraignment, Martial appeared to go on an indecipherable rant.
The judge said, I understand you would like to go to a psychiatric facility, but I'm not going to permit that until after the psychiatric exam.
Defense lawyers reserved the right to put in a bail application.
Martial was ordered to return to court on February 23.
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