US Man Arrested for Assaulting Sikh Teen Wearing Turban

A 26-year-old man has been arrested and charged with a hate crime in the US for attacking a Sikh teenager on a bus as he was wearing a turban.

The incident occurred on a bus near 118th Street and Liberty Avenue in Queens last week. Christopher Philippeaux was arrested by the police and charged with a hate crime, according to CBS News.

Philippeaux approached the 19-year-old Sikh teen on a New York City MTA bus and made derogatory comments about his turban, saying, “We don’t wear that in this country.” He also demanded the teen to remove his mask and proceeded to punch him in the face, back, and head in an attempt to remove the turban. After the assault, Philippeaux got off the bus and fled along Liberty Avenue.

Police records reveal that Philippeaux had been conditionally released on parole in July 2021 after serving over two years in state prison for an attempted robbery conviction in Manhattan. He has also been previously arrested for obstructing governmental administration.

The Sikh teen expressed his shock and anger over the incident, emphasizing that no one should be harassed based on their appearance.

“Right now, the victim is very traumatized. The family is very scared for him,” said community activist Japneet Singh, as quoted by ABC News.

The Acting Chief Customer Officer of the MTA stated, “I watched the video and I was angry, I was outraged, and just moved by what happened to the victim. New York City is a melting pot, and it’s my understanding that this gentleman has only been here for about a year. This is not how we welcome people to our city.”

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