a man who pleaded guiltyMore than 100 people convicted during the hate crime attack earlier this year in Yonkers, New York, were sentenced Tuesday to 17 1/2 years, prosecutors said.
Tamel Esco, 42, was sentenced for the March assault against a 67-year-old Asian woman in the lobby of her Yonkers apartment building, the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office announced in a news release. Esco pleaded guilty in September to first-degree assault as a hate crime.
Prosecutors said that on March 11, Esco used anti-Asian slurs against the victim, who is of Filipino descent, when she approached him from behind and punched her on the head, causing her to fall to the ground.
Prosecutors said Esco continued to attack the woman, punching her more than 100 times, stomping on her with his construction boots and spitting on her. Shortly after the attack, police released surveillance video of the incident.
The district attorney’s office said the victim had a brain hemorrhage, multiple facial fractures, and bruises on her head and face. She appeared in court on Tuesday to read her impact statement, which said the “heartless” attack had caused her to lose her home.
“Because of the cruelty and hatred of Tammel Esco, I lost the place I called home for over 24 years, the place where I raised my daughters and my longtime neighbors… As soon as the attack happened , All I could think was, ‘Please God let me live, please my daughters need me,'” she said, according to the district attorney’s office. “A complete stranger has mercilessly spat on, beaten and kicked me over 100 times just because of my heritage… My only hope is that God and the criminal justice system will see fit to make sure this happens to another innocent family Never be with again.”
At a news briefing Tuesday, Westchester County District Attorney Miriam Rokah described the attack as “one of the most vicious and shocking hate crimes” the area had seen.
“This is a case that has truly traumatized not only the victim and her family, but her neighbors in the City of Yonkers, the wider Westchester community and the wider Asian American and Pacific Islander community across the country,” Rocha said.
Esco has been held without bail since his arrest on the day of the attack.