(JTA) — A Jewish woman and her mother were beaten up at a Queens subway station by a man who mistook them for Muslims, police said.
The alleged assailant, a 40-year-old man, was arrested at the scene in Forest Hills and charged with multiple counts of assault as a hate crime, officials said.
According to a report Thursday on the incident by the New York Post, the women, 37 and 57, had just exited the M train and were walking toward the exit of the 67th Avenue station in Forest Hills when they heard the man hurl an insult at them around 2 p.m. Wednesday.
When the younger woman told the man to repeat what he had just said, he spit in her face and said “Get out of my country, you dirty Muslim,” according to a police report on the incident based on the testimonies of the alleged victims.
He then began punching both women in the face and body. The report did not say what made the man target the women.
The two women, who were not named in the report, were not seriously injured and refused medical attention.
The suspect, identified as Dimitrios Zias, had been arrested in 2015 for aiming his cellphone camera up a woman’s skirt at a Manhattan department store, officials said.