A Chinese American man who was violently attacked in April has died of his injuries.
The Manhattan district attorney’s office said on Saturday that murder charges could be filed against Jarrod Powell, 49, following the death of Ma, according to The New York Times.
He is still the subject of an investigation by the New York Police Department, and has already been charged with attempted murder and two counts of assault as a hate crime.
Mr Powell was also seen in widely circulated video footage appearing to stomp on Ma’s head during the attack in April 2021, and reportedly told police that he attacked an Asian man because he had been robbed the day before.
Karlin Chan, a community activist in New York City and a spokesman for Ma’s family, said that neither man knew the other, and that “We’re calling on the District Attorney’s Office to upgrade the charges to murder now”.
He told The Associated Press: “We’re fighting for justice and I hope [Powell] never walks the streets as a free man. He needs to pay for what he did.”
Mr Chain said Ma had been moved in and out of multiple facilities during the past eight months, and died in a long-term care centre run by The New Jewish Home.
A funeral is being planned for sometime next week, and Mr Powell is expected to make a court appearance on 10 February.
Additional reporting by The Associated Press.
Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism
By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists
Already have an account? sign in