Watch CBS News

NYPD: Possible Anti-Asian Attack Captured On Camera Inside Flatbush, Brooklyn Deli; Suspect At Large

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- A terrifying attack was caught on camera in Brooklyn.

A deli owner says he was assaulted after a customer refused to pay, CBS2's Kevin Rincon reported Sunday.

On Saturday morning inside the deli in Flatbush, 67-year-old owner Ki Tae Lee was attacked, police said.

When asked where he was hit, Lee said, "Over here, over here … boom, boom, boom, boom and then leave."

He said his wife has stepped out for a moment when a man walked in demanding not to pay for his food.

"Free everything. No pay, yeah," Lee said.

Moments later, the suspect started to trash the front counter. When Lee tried to stop him, he was assaulted, police said.

Customers of all backgrounds were shocked.

"To be honest, they don't deserve that," neighbor Juan Fuentes said through a translator, adding he has been coming to this deli for years and called the Lees an important part of the neighborhood.

Michael Meade also lives nearby.

"I think we have to all stand together now and make sure they are okay and that our community is okay," Meade said. "It's tragic. I mean, this is a great family, hard working, here every single day, working 365 days a year. It's heartbreaking to see it. I just wanted to come out and support them."

The attack which was caught on surveillance camera and is being examined as a possible anti-Asian hate crime. The owner said the attacker has made anti-Asian comments in the past, but he is not sure if he did it this time.

Lee went to the hospital, but did not suffer and serious injuries. He was back at work on Sunday.

Meanwhile, just a month ago two men smashed the front door to the deli after screaming at Lee, "Go back to your country!"

Investigators spent a good part of Sunday collecting more evidence, including security video.

No arrests have been made, but there's an entire community hoping they do find the suspect and bring him to justice.

CBS2's Kevin Rincon contributed to this report.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.