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Biden Announces Actions to Combat Anti-Asian Attacks

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Attorney General Merrick B. Garland told Justice Department employees on Tuesday that the rise of reported hate crimes required “renewed energy and emphasis on investigation and prosecution, increased community outreach and the improved collection of data critical to understanding the evolving nature and extent of hate crimes.”

As part of the Justice Department’s 30-day review, officials will also consider how prosecutors can use civil penalties to address acts of bias that do not rise to the standard of a hate crime. Hate crime charges can be difficult to prove in court.

In some states, including New York, prosecutors need to show that victims were specifically targeted because of their race. Experts have said that establishing such a motive for attacks against Asians is even more challenging because there is no widely recognized symbol of anti-Asian hate, such as a noose or a swastika.

“Hate crimes persist and continue to have a toxic effect on our society,” Mr. Garland wrote in a memo.

Many Democrats have suggested that President Donald J. Trump bears some responsibility for the surge in anti-Asian attacks. They say Mr. Trump fanned anti-Chinese sentiment in particular throughout the pandemic last year, calling the coronavirus the “China virus.”

The Biden administration’s response won praise from members of Congress, including Senator Mazie K. Hirono, Democrat of Hawaii, who along with Senator Tammy Duckworth of Illinois criticized the administration last week for lacking Asian representation at its highest levels.

“Racism is never far below the surface in our country, which is all too evident as the A.A.P.I. community has experienced escalating attacks and targeted violence during the pandemic,” Ms. Hirono said, referring to Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders. “We must confront the systems that have allowed this hatred to fester and spread, and today’s clear demonstration of presidential leadership is a critical step forward.”

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Suspect arrested in fatal Brooklyn stabbing

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Police have apprehended a suspect in the fatal December stabbing of a Brooklyn man, cops said on Saturday.

The suspect, John Headley, 32, also of Brooklyn, was taken into custody Friday and charged with murder and weapons possession for the Dec. 12 knifing of Ken Baird, 37, police said.

Baird was stabbed multiple times in the chest following a dispute on Crown Street near Utica Avenue in Crown Heights at about 6:40 p.m., police said.

EMS transported Baird to King County Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, cops said.

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Man dies after jumping from Staten Island Ferry

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A 53-year-old man died Saturday after jumping from the Staten Island Ferry into the chilly waters of New York Harbor, police said.

NYPD Harbor launch officers pulled the man out of the water after responding to reports of a jumper near the Whitehall Ferry Terminal in Manhattan at around 2 p.m.

“He jumped off the ferry as it pulled away from the dock,” an NYPD spokesman told The Post. He jumped off the Ferryboat Andrew J. Barberi, police said.

The unidentified victim was removed to Pier 11 and transported to New York-Presbyterian Hospital, where he was pronounced dead shortly after 3:10 p.m.

A newsstand worker said there were “about 50 or so emergency people” at Pier 11 following a valiant effort — which included CPR — to save the man’s life.

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An NYPD spokesman says the 53-year-old man “jumped off the ferry as it pulled away from the dock.”

Michael Dalton

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The 53-year-old man was transported to New York-Presbyterian Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Michael Dalton

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Kemp Lashes M.L.B. as Republicans Defend Georgia’s Voting Law

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Mr. Kemp, who is gearing up to run for re-election in 2022, has striven to re-enter the good graces of Republican voters after becoming a central political target of former President Donald J. Trump because of his refusal to help Mr. Trump overturn the state’s election results last year. A former secretary of state of Georgia who has his own record of decisions that made voting harder for the state’s residents, he is again a key G.O.P. voice leading the charge on the issue.

On Saturday, he repeatedly tried to paint the league’s decision as driven by Stacey Abrams, the voting rights advocate and former Democratic candidate for governor in Georgia who is seen as likely to challenge Mr. Kemp again next year.

Ms. Abrams, one of the most prominent critics of Georgia’s voting law, has pushed back on calls for sports leagues and corporations to boycott the state. She said on Friday that she was “disappointed” baseball officials had pulled the All-Star Game but that she was “proud of their stance on voting rights.”

In defending the law in Georgia, Mr. Kemp singled out two Democratically controlled states, New York and Delaware, and compared their voting regulations with the new law in Georgia. Those states do not offer as many options for early voting as Georgia does, but they have also not passed new laws instituting restrictions on voting.

“In New York, they have 10 days of early voting,” Mr. Kemp said (New York actually has nine). “In Georgia, we have a minimum of 17, with two additional Sundays that are optional in our state. In New York, you have to have an excuse to vote absentee. In Georgia, you can vote absentee for any reason.”

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