Suspect apprehended in connection with anti-gay subway attack

Allasheed Allah, 54, has been charged with assault as a hate crime and aggravated harassment as a hate crime for the Nov. 30 attack on a 20-year-old woman.
By Tim Fitzsimons

The New York City Police department apprehended a man in connection with an anti-gay attack on the subway that left a woman with a fractured spine.

The New York City Police Department is asking for the public's assistance in ascertaining the whereabouts of an unidentified male who fled the train and the subway system at the Forest Hills 71 Avenue station in the Queens borough of New York.NYPD

Allasheed Allah, a 54-year-old man from Manhattan’s East Harlem neighborhood, was arraigned on Thursday and charged with assault as a hate crime and aggravated harassment as a hate crime for the Nov. 30 attack in New York City’s Queens borough.

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Allah is accused of hurling homophobic slurs at the 20-year-old woman before physically attacking her. Police said after the woman left the subway station in Queens’ Forest Hills neighborhood, Allah followed her, punched her and then pushed her to the ground, causing her to strike her head and fracture her spine.

Police, who had publicized a photo and video of the suspect earlier this week, said a tip from the public helped them apprehend Allah, who allegedly fled the scene of the crime.

Court records didn't list a lawyer who could comment on Allah's behalf.

This latest incident comes just weeks after a Queens man was charged with several hate crimes after allegedly beating two gay men unconscious in Brooklyn. The suspect, Brandon McNamara, faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

Hate crimes against LGBTQ people in the U.S. continued to rise in 2017, jumping 3 percent from the year prior, according to hate crimes data released by the FBI last month. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people make up more than 16 percent of all hate crime victims, according to the FBI’s report, despite comprising an estimated 4.5 percent of the general population.

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Associated Press contributed.