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Police chief calls on public to help identify suspect in Los Gatos hate crime

The Los Gatos-Monte Sereno Police Department released a video Thursday calling on the public to help identify the suspect in a recent hate crime.

According to police, a 40-year-old woman of Filipino descent was assaulted while walking on Los Gatos Boulevard Tuesday around 5 p.m. The victim was wearing medical scrubs at the time of the incident. Chief of Police Peter Decena said in the video that she was shoved from behind and fell to the ground, and that she heard someone say:

“Go back to (expletive) China.”

After she hit the ground, the victim reportedly turned around and saw the suspect on bicycle. Police have described the suspect as an either white or light complexion Hispanic male who was wearing a black or grey bicycle helmet, dark neck gaiter, black t-shirt with white writing and dark jeans. The man was last seen riding southbound on Los Gatos Boulevard.

Decena referred to the victim as “one of our medical heroes” and reiterated she did nothing to provoke the attack. She was uninjured, but the chief said she was “obviously very shaken by what had occurred. The incident is being investigated as a hate crime and police are calling on members of the public who were in the area and may be able to provide additional information.

In the video, Decena said condemned recent hate crimes against Asian and Pacific Islander communities, saying:

“As a person of both Asian and Pacific Islander descent, I have been watching with shock and dismay the continuing acts of violence and hate being directed to people who look like me.”

The chief stressed the importance of reporting all hate crimes as quickly as possible, extending that message to people targeted for ethnicity, race, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, religion or political beliefs. Based on his own experience, he acknowledged that many Asian Americans, and particularly seniors, “are often reluctant to report crimes against them.”

People can report information related to the Thursday incident by calling the police department at (408) 354-8600 or by email at police@losgatosca.gov.

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