Police have charged a Manhattan man with murder in the fatal stabbing of a 35-year-old Asian woman inside of her Chinatown apartment on Sunday morning, authorities said.
Assamad Nash, 25, was arrested and charged with murder and burglary, police said Monday. The killing has not been ruled a hate crime, though it follows a spate of violent attacks on the city’s Asian-American community and a dramatic spike in Asian-related hate crimes since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Police said they responded to a 911 call early Sunday morning and found the suspect barricaded inside the apartment. On gaining entry, police said they found the victim, Christina Yuna Lee “in the bathroom with trauma about the body.” She was pronounced dead at the scene.
Police said Nash lived on the Bowery, only blocks away from where the stabbing took place.
News of the attack brought an outpouring of alarm and condolences from political and community leaders throughout the state. A rally was scheduled for Monday morning to call out violence against the Asian-American community.
On Sunday Mayor Eric Adams called the incident "the definition of horrific," and in a statement he released on Sunday, said New Yorkers were mourning the woman and would "stand with our Asian brothers and sisters." He added that even though the suspect is in custody, "the conditions that created him remain."