A 59-year-old worker at a Vietnamese restaurant was shot dead in Northeast Philadelphia Wednesday night.
Xiao Zhong Lin was shot once in the right side of his body inside the restaurant on the 5500 block of Whitaker Avenue around 8:25 p.m., police said. A person closing the shop told NBC10 the victim was an employee.
Police said the man was of Asian descent, though it was unclear if race played a role in his killing. Anti-Asian hate crime has been on the rise nationally since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
A report released in November by Stop AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islander) Hate found that from March 19, 2020 to September 30, 2021, 10,370 hate incidents against AAPI people were reported to Stop AAPI Hate. Those reports reflect only a small number of hate incidents nationally, Stop AAPI Hate found.
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The group documented some first-hand accounts of harassment. Anecdotes included people using the coronavirus, which originated in China, to verbally attack AAPI victims.
The attacker in Wednesday’s Philadelphia shooting ran away. Police did not have a description or a motive.
There are additional resources for people or communities that have endured gun violence in Philadelphia. Further information can be found here.