Chi­nese man’s killing re­flects ‘dan­ger­ous’ neigh­bor­hood

China Daily (Canada) - - ACROSSAMERICA - By AMY HE in New York amyhe@chi­nadai­lyusa.com

Res­i­dents of a neigh­bor­hood in lower Man­hat­tan, where last week a 68-yearold Chi­nese man was beaten and died from his in­juries, said they have al­ways been con­cerned about their safety in the area.

“Dur­ing the day, you’re guar­an­teed to be pretty safe, but once it gets dark, the fur­ther east you go, the more dan­ger­ous it is,” said a se­cu­rity guard who works in a build­ing a few doors down from 745 East 6th Street, in the East Vil­lage where Ruan Wen­hui was at­tacked on the evening of May 9. C and D in the East Vil­lage. “Once you hit [av­enue] D, that’s where the stuff goes down. But on this street? Noth­ing hap­pens,” said the woman, who, like all people in the area in­ter­viewed by a China Daily re­porter, de­clined to be named.

Ruan was taken to Belle­vue Hospi­tal Cen­ter af­ter the at­tack and died on May 10 from bleed­ing of the brain and con­tu­sions, po­lice said.

Po­lice put up posters in the area, of­fer­ing $2,000 for in­for­ma­tion about the at­tack. On Tues­day they re­ceived a tip that the sus­pect lived in the neigh­bor­hood, the New York Times re­ported. Later that day, Jamie Pugh, 20, was ar­rested and charged with sec­ond-de­gree mur­der, rob­bery and as­sault.

Pugh, who was ar­raigned in the Man­hat­tan Crim­i­nal Court, has mul­ti­ple ar­rests on his record, and did not give a state­ment to de­tec­tives, the Times said.

“The safety in this area is pretty bad,” said a Chi­nese woman who lives in the neigh­bor­hood. “People are al­ways do­ing drugs on the streets. I’m not sur­prised some­thing like this hap­pened.”

“Things started get­ting re­ally bad in this area some­time last year,” said a neighbor who said she and her hus­band knew Ruan and his fam­ily. “Kids around this area are al­ways act­ing up.”

The neighbor’s hus­band said that they had of­ten ex­er­cised to­gether.

“We called his wife two days af­ter the in­ci­dent to see how they were do­ing. As ex­pected, they were do­ing ter­ri­bly be­cause this came out of nowhere,” the hus­band said.

The Ruan fam­ily wants Pugh’s as­sault to be treated as a hate crime and wants him to serve a life sen­tence, ac­cord­ing to the New York Daily News.

Pugh’s mother said that her son must have been high on the drug ec­stasy and that her son “is not like that”, she told the New York Post.

“When he goes to jail for this crime,” the se­cu­rity guard said to China Daily, “he’ll re­al­ize the grav­ity of what it means to take some­one’s life like that.”

JACK FREIFELDER / CHINA DAILY

Mem­bers of the Wuhan mu­nic­i­pal govern­ment pose for a photo with David C Chang (third from right), the Com­mit­tee of 100’s co-chair of In­ter­na­tional Pro­grams, and Thomas B Moore (cen­ter), act­ing pres­i­dent of the China In­sti­tute (CI) in Amer­ica, at an event on Wed­nes­day in New York. The event, which was co-hosted by the CI and C-100, fea­tured a pre­sen­ta­tion of plans to build a new sci-tech city as an ex­ten­sion of the renowned Op­ti­cal Val­ley in China’s Hubei prov­ince.

AMY HE / CHINA DAILY

New York City po­lice posted signs on Sixth Street be­tween Av­enues C and D in East Vil­lage in New York, seek­ing in­for­ma­tion about the mur­der of 68-year-old Ruan Wen­hui. The sus­pect, Jamie Pugh, was ar­rested on Tues­day.

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