Victim dies after possible bias attack in Union Square

Victim dies after possible bias attack in Union Square

NEW YORK (AP) - A 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, authorities said.

Jeffrey Babbitt, 62, died Monday. Police said the attack happened Wednesday in Union Square Park in Manhattan. After Babbitt was struck, he fell backward and hit his head.

Officials said Lashawn Marten, 31, 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.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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