Two doormen of a luxury New York apartment building have been fired after video showed them watch on as a 65-year-old Filipino American woman was attacked on the street.
In the video released by New York Police Department’s crime stoppers, Vilma Kari was repeatedly kicked and beaten outside the building near Times Square as two unidentified lobby staff remained inside and one closed the door.
The management company, Brodsky Organization, announced in a statement on Tuesday that the two men have been immediately terminated.
“While the full lobby video shows that once the assailant had departed, the doormen emerged to assist the victim and flag down an NYPD vehicle, it is clear that required emergency and safety protocols were not followed,” the statement said.
The footage from 29 March quickly went viral as at least three people appeared to stand by and do nothing to intervene in the attack. The full six-minute video showed the doormen leave the building about a minute after the attack to assist the woman, according to Pix11 News.
Police arrested 38-year-old Brandon Elliot on two counts of second-degree assault, and an attempted assault as a hate crime.
Ms Kari was on her way to church about 11.40 am when Mr Elliott allegedly told her she didn’t “belong here” and kicked her to the ground, according to a statement from Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance.
“Let me be clear: this brave woman belongs here. Asian-American New Yorkers belong here. Everyone belongs here. Attacks against Asian-American New Yorkers are attacks against all New Yorkers, and my Office will continue to stand against hate in all its forms,” the statement said.
Mr Elliot had been living at a Midtown hotel doubling as a homeless shelter after being released on lifetime parole in 2019 for the murder of his mother in 2002, police said.
The two doormen involved were originally suspended while the building’s owner conducted an investigation of the incident. They said its building service employees would receive training on emergency response protocols and bystander intervention.
“We are extremely distraught and shocked by this incident, and our hearts go out to the victim. We have been working with the AAPI civic community to reach her family, as well as to determine how best to support the fight against anti-Asian hate crimes,” the company statement said, according to NBC News.