A trans woman of color was charged for multiple hate crime felonies following a series of pepper spray attacks in NYC last weekend (10 March).
New York Police Department (NYPD) arrested Tasha Heard in connection with at least two separate attacks.
Though, police are allegedly questioning her about several other similar incidents, NBC News reported.
In one alleged incident, Heard is accused of approaching a white couple in their 50s on Friday afternoon.
While shopping in the Bronx, she reportedly informed the couple and ‘sprayed a substance in their face,’ an NYPD spokesperson stated.
Similarly, the other alleged incident also occurred in the Bronx.
‘The defendant approached a 30-year-old male and a 24-year-old female, asked them if they were white and displayed a sharp object causing fear.
‘The female victim was sprayed in the face with an unknown substance causing redness, burning and discomfort.’
Police told NBC New York that Heard pepper-sprayed six other white people in Manhattan.
Five at a subway stop in Harlem and one at a nearby subway stop on the Upper West Side.
‘She maced me and kept walking’
Joshua Smith, one of those alleged victims, said the suspect never said a word when she pepper-sprayed him near subway stop on 125th Street in Harlem.
‘She held the mace directly to my eye and sprayed it in my eye,’ Smith told NBC New York.
‘She just walked up to me, like literally walked up, maced me and kept walking.’
Moreover, the substance ‘lights your whole face on fire, your sinuses, your throat feels like it’s closing up,’ he explained.
‘What are you looking at?’
In 2015, NYPD investigated an incident in which a trans woman was pushed into an incoming subway train in Greenwich Village.
The woman was on the platform awaiting a southbound 6 train at Bleeker Street when she was approached by a man.
The man asked her, ‘What are you looking at?’ before pushing her.