NEW YORK (1010 WINS) — The 29-year-old New York City man who allegedly stabbed a Turkish man and attempted to stab three others with a knife in Hell's Kitchen last month is facing multiple hate crime charges, Manhattan District Attorney Alvin L. Bragg announced Friday.
On April 15, at 12:08 a.m., Konrad Pielak was walking down West 44th Street between 9th and 10th Avenue when he approached a group of men who were speaking to each other in Turkish, and asked them, "Are you Turkish?," according to the district attorney's office.
When the men replied "yes," Pielak allegedly said, "I hate Turks," and lunged at the men with a knife, stabbing one victim in the chest.
He then allegedly rushed at three other people in the group and attempted to stab them, according to the office. Pielak then said he would "be back tomorrow to kill you" and fled the scene.
The injured victim suffered a chest wound, and he was transported to the hospital.
Pielak was arrested on April 20 by the NYPD’s Hate Crimes Task Force after an NYPD officer recognized Pielak from surveillance footage from the scene of the crime.
He faces two counts of first-degree assault as a hate crime, six counts of second-degree attempted assault as a hate crime and one count of fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon, the office said.
"This group of individuals was viciously attacked simply because they were Turkish. Nobody should feel unsafe sitting outside and speaking in their native language, and if you are a victim of a hate crime I encourage you to please call our hotline at 212-335-3100," Bragg said.
Bragg said "bias-driven crime" is a major concern of his office.
"Combatting bias-driven crime continues to be a top priority for my Office, which is why we are expanding our Hate Crimes Unit so it has enhanced capacity to prosecute cases and support our communities."