But it wasn't until they watched the building's surveillance footage did they realize just how heinous the crime was.
The video shows the victim slowly pushing her wheeled cart in through the first door of the building; she takes out her keys and is about to open the second, when a man enters the vestibule behind her.
Without warning, he swings a vicious right hook to the back of her head, sending her sprawling face first to the ground. He then proceeds to punch her 124 more times:
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
The difficult to watch footage shows him standing over her, methodically alternating fists as he mercilessly pummels her head and face, over and over, for more than a minute.
He then stands up, stomps on her seven more times, and spits on her.
Afterwards, he calmly walks outside as if nothing happened, leaving the elderly victim a barely-moving bloody wreck.
She suffered multiple contusions and lacerations to her head and face, facial bone fractures, and bleeding on the brain. Miraculously, she is currently listed in stable condition and is recovering in hospital.
She was later able to tell police she had seen the suspect standing outside the building as she made her way home. As she walked past him, she said he called her an "Asian bitch". She ignored him and made her way inside, seconds before his brutal assault.
"Hate crimes are beyond intolerable in our city. I applaud our Yonkers Police for swiftly apprehending this violent criminal and removing him from our streets," Mayor Mike Spano said in a statement.
Chinatown, NYC. Look at the long, long line of mostly Asian women and elderly waiting to get their pepper spray. This is the clearest sign people are living in fear 😔💔 #StopAsianHatepic.twitter.com/FXt5Zl3qZS