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Video: Man attacks Asian San Francisco officer, citizens rush to help

Police officials said they would work to determine if the incident was a possible hate crime

san francisco asian officer attacked

By Tessa McLean
SFGate, San Francisco

SAN FRANCISCO — Video captured from a surveillance camera Friday evening shows a man attacking an Asian San Francisco police officer in Chinatown. The female officer had attempted to detain the man near Portsmouth Square, according to KTVU, and he appeared to comply before becoming suddenly violent and attacking her.

The video was posted to Instagram Sunday morning by user @ the_asian_dawn.

Witnesses told KTVU that the man was seen earlier vandalizing rental scooters and yelling and threatening people. One witness said the man said at one point, “Chinese people don’t belong here.”

The police officer had told the man he needed to leave the area and he initially was compliant. But within seconds he began attacking the officer, who fought back before they both landed on the ground. Bystanders tried to help get the man off the officer and ultimately she was able to pin him to the ground while other officers arrived at the scene to help.

An SFPD spokesman told the San Francisco Chronicle their investigation would look into whether the incident was a possible hate crime. The officer who was attacked was taken to the hospital and treated for non-life-threatening injuries. ( SFGATE and The San Francisco Chronicle are both owned by Hearst but operate independently of one another.)

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