Hassanain allegedly punched the victim multiple times in the face and body, according to the indictment. Hassanain told investigators he was at the airport to pick up his girlfriend. “I saw a taxi driver there who cursed at me. I punched him and called him names,” Hassanain said, the indictment said.
During the incident, the driver said Hassanain told him, “You turban, go back to your country,” the indictment reads.
New York Police Department arrested Hassanain on Thursday and he was arraigned before the Queens County Criminal Court on Friday. He is charged with third-degree assault as a hate crime, third-degree assault and second-degree harassment, according to the indictment.
DailyExpertNews has reached out to a lawyer for legal aid for Hassanain, but has heard nothing.
The driver’s turban fell off during the alleged attack and he was taken to hospital with chest and arms pain as a result of the alleged attack, the indictment said.
“It’s deeply rooted and heartbreaking and just so disheartening to watch,” the tweet said.
“No one should experience what I have done, but if they do, I hope they receive the same overwhelming amount of support and prompt, professional action from the authorities,” the statement said.
According to the prosecutor’s office, Hassanain’s next court hearing is scheduled for March 8.
DailyExpertNews’s Liam Reilly, Laura Ly and Artemis Moshtaghian contributed to this report.