A man who brutally assaulted an Asian man in New York who later died was sentenced to 22 years in prison on Friday.
Jarrod Powell, 51, had pleaded guilty to first-degree manslaughter as a hate crime in connection with the man’s death, according to the Manhattan District Attorney’s office. It was part of a plea deal in the racially motivated assault of 61-year-old Yao Pan Ma that resulted in his death.
“Mr. Ma’s death was the result of a despicable racially motivated attack,” Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg said in a statement.
In April 2021, Yao Pan Ma was collecting cans on an East Harlem corner when he was approached from behind, struck in the back and, after he fell to the ground, kicked in the head multiple times, police said at the time.
Ma, who was Chinese-American, was unresponsive and unconsciousness when hospitalized for his injuries. He died from the injuries eight months after the attack, on December 31, 2021.
Bragg said the victim’s family had to endure an agonizing eight months while he was in hospital in a vegetative state.
Powell has also been sentenced to five years of post-release supervision, the DA’s office said.
The Manhattan DA’s Office currently has 39 open hate crime cases related to anti-Asian hate crimes, the DA’s office said in a news release.
“New York is one of the most diverse cities in the world, and no one should have to fear that they may be in danger because of their background. We will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to ensure that New Yorkers of all origins feel safe,” Bragg said.
Reported hate crimes against Asians in 16 of the nation’s largest cities and counties rose 164% in 2021, according to a study from the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University San Bernardino.