May 10, 2021 By Michael Dorgan
A man who allegedly shoved an Asian woman to the ground outside a Flushing bakery in February has been indicted by a Queens County grand jury with a hate crime.
Patrick Mateo, a Flushing resident, allegedly pushed the victim to the pavement after getting into an argument with her outside a bakery near Main Street on Feb. 16.
The push caused the woman, 52, to hit her head on a metal news stand box as she fell to the sidewalk, according to the Queens District Attorney’s office. The woman, who is originally from China, suffered a long gash across her forehead that required about 10 stitches to close, prosecutors said.
Mateo, 47, has also been charged with aggravated harassment charges and assault. He faces up to one year in jail if convicted of all charges.
The alleged assault took place in front of New Flushing Bakery, located at 135-45 Roosevelt Ave., and was caught on video before being uploaded to social media where it went viral.
According to the charges, Mateo was in line at the bakery at around 2 p.m. when he got into a argument with the victim.
Mateo then cursed at the Asian woman and pushed her in the face before he went into the bakery and grabbed a cardboard box.
He then ran back outside and allegedly threw the cardboard box at the victim before pushing her to the pavement, leaving her with a large cut to the forehead.
Mateo was arrested less than 48 hours after the incident and a subsequent search of his cell phone allegedly “revealed anti-Asian sentiment,” Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said. She did not elaborate as to what the anti-Asian sentiment was.
Katz said that prosecutors have been investigating the incident since February and needed time to establish evidence of a hate crime before bringing charges against Mateo.
“Hate crime requires a need to show that the victim was targeted because of her ethnicity,” Katz said. “Our investigation has concluded and now the defendant is charged with a hate crime.”
Mateo is now awaiting arraignment in Queens Supreme Court.