55-year-old Joseph Caleca was apprehended by the NYPD on Monday and now faces attempted murder and felony assault charges, with both being classified as hate crimes. Caleca, who was driving his truck through the Richmond Hill area of Queens at the time of the incident, allegedly told the victim, 30-year-old Sandeep Singh, to "Go back to your country, Bin Laden," because he felt Singh and a group of friends were not crossing the street fast enough. While one of his friends called the NYPD, Singh tried to stop the driver from moving his truck, but the driver instead hit the gas and ran Singh over, dragging him more than 30 feet.
Caleca, of Setauket, Long Island, fled the scene, and allegedly evaded arrest while relatives of Singh began gathering evidence of the crime, a step the NYPD initially refused to take. Singh's brother, Navdeep Singh, told the Times Ledger that he had to collect surveillance footage from nearby bodegas and bring them to the 102 Precinct himself, because the NYPD hadn't bothered to do so.
Singh required twenty stitches and stomach surgery as a result of the collision.