70-year-old Sikh man attacked on early morning walk in Queens

RICHMOND HILL, Queens (WABC) -- A 70-year-old Sikh man was attacked on an early morning walk in Queens.

The assault, police say was unprovoked, and left him with a broken nose and severe bruising. Now, the South Asian community is outraged and concerned for their safety.

Still wearing his bloodied jacket and speaking his native language of Punjabi, Nirmal Singh spoke to Eyewitness News about the moment he was hit.

Sing says he was punched from behind on a Sunday morning walk around 7 a.m. on 95th Avenue and Lefferts Blvd. in Richmond Hill.

There were no words exchanged, but the assault left him with severe injuries. Gurinder Singh spotted the 70-year-old moments later and his heart sunk.

"We have grandfathers and stuff and seeing such an elderly person being attacked and all bloodied up, and he was worried," he said.

Singh has only been in the country for two weeks on a visitors visa.

The attack is being investigated as a bias crime. Community Activist Japneet Singh is convinced it is.

"People come at us a certain way because of the way we look," he said.

He says the community has experienced hate crimes, especially those who wear a turban - a part of the Sikh faith.

Now, many are asking for more protection and police at a time of uncertainty.

Those who live in the area say they will be keeping a close eye on the elderly and making sure they are not alone when they are outside.



As far as this investigation - it is very active, but no arrests have been made.

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