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NYPD Forms Task Force To Fight Increase In Hate Crimes Against Asian Americans

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- The NYPD has formed a new task force to fight an increase in hate crimes against Asian Americans.

Police say there have been 21 hate crimes against Asian Americans reported since March. Seventeen of those led to arrests.

RELATED STORY: March Against Hate Crimes Targeting Asian Americans Held In Manhattan

The NYPD says the attacks, both verbal and physical, are being fueled by anti-Asian rhetoric about the coronavirus.

"This hit home for me because I have friends, families, who are legitimately afraid to go outside because they fear for their safety," said NYPD Deputy Inspector Stewart Loo.

RELATED STORY: Volunteers Band Together To Keep Community Safe With Racist Attacks Against Asian Americans On The Rise

The task force will be made up of 25 Asian-American investigators who speak different languages.

The NYPD says cultural barriers often prevent victims from reporting attacks and cooperating with police.

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