NYC man dies after punched in possible bias attack

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Associated Press

Posted on September 9, 2013 at 4:33 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — Authorities say a 62-year-old New York City man has died less than a week after he was assaulted by a man who threatened to "punch the first white man" he saw.

Jeffrey Babbitt died Monday. Police say the attack happened Wednesday in Union Square Park in Manhattan. After Babbitt was struck, he fell backward and hit his head.

Officials say 31-year-old Lashawn Marten punched the man and then attacked two other men who tried to help Babbitt.

Babbitt is white. Marten is black.

The New York Police Department's hate crimes unit is investigating. Marten is being held on an assault charge, but upgraded charges are possible.

A call to the law office representing Marten was not returned.

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