Thomas Tracy, New York Daily News
A hulking 42-year-old man is facing attempted murder as a hate crime charges Tuesday after repeatedly pummeling a 67-year-old Asian woman in the vestibule of her Yonkers building, authorities said.
Tammel Esco was caught on camera punching the helpless woman more than 125 times during the unprovoked March 11 assault, according to Yonkers police.
He had called his victim an “Asian b—-” as she walked past him with a shopping cart, but the woman ignored the hateful insult, police said.
When the woman opened the glass doors to the apartment vestibule, he followed her inside, his fists already clenched. A moment later he punches her in the back of the head, knocking her to the ground, surveillance video released by police show.
But Esco didn’t stop there. He threw haymaker after haymaker at the helpless woman for the next two and a half minutes, the video shows.
The suspect’s pants slowly slide off his behind as he continues to punch the woman, the video shows. He also stomped on her seven times and spat at her.
Yonkers Police Commissioner John Mueller said the brutal assault was “one of the most appalling attacks I have ever seen.”
“To beat a helpless woman is despicable and targeting her because of her race makes it more so,” Mueller said. “This defendant must be held to the maximum punishment allowed by law to send a clear message that hateful, violent behavior will not be tolerated in our communities.”
When cops were called to the scene, they found the woman suffering from massive facial injuries. They also found Esco standing outside the woman’s apartment.
As the woman was rushed to an area hospital, Esco was taken into custody. Cops charged him with attempted murder and assault, both as hate crimes.
A Westchester County judge ordered him held without bail. His next court appearance will be on March 25.
His victim is seriously injured with deep cuts and bruises to her head and face, but is expected to survive, Yonkers officials said.
The brutal attack comes as hate crimes against Asians have skyrocketed across the country.
No anti-Asian hate crimes have been reported in Yonkers in 2020, but seven had been reported a year earlier in 2019, according to the New York State Division of Criminal Justice.
New York City saw 131 anti-Asian hate crimes in all of 2021, up from 27 the year before, according to NYPD data.