New York police are investigating whether a Saturday evening attack on a woman wearing traditional Muslim dress was a hate crime.
As the New York Daily News first reported, the unidentified 36-year-old woman had the sleeve of her blouse set on fire while on Fifth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan. She was able to put out the fire without getting hurt, but the suspect was got away.
The NYPD confirmed to Fusion that the attack took place and that its Hate Crimes Task Force was looking into whether or not the crime was motivated by anti-Muslim bigotry.
Given the information available, it's difficult to know whether or not the incident the day before the 15th anniversary of the September 11th attacks has any link to Islamophobia. But the last year has seen a disturbing number of attacks on Muslims in the United States.
Earlier today, we recounted all the different attacks on Muslim students in the last year, as well as a Florida mosque that was the victim of an arson attack. Some other incidents from the last year beyond those include:
- Two incidences of arson at mosques, one in Texas and another in California, over the Christmas holiday.
- A New York City Muslim man being assaulted by three laughing men while leaving evening prayers.
- A New York City imam and his assistant were both shotin the head near a Queens mosque.
- A Brooklyn woman attempted to rip the hijabs off two Muslim women pushing their strollers while yelling "Get the f—k out of America."
This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.