What to Know
- A woman was brutally murdered in her Chinatown apartment early Sunday, and a man who already had multiple open court cases is in custody in her death
- Christina Yuna Lee was just getting home from a Saturday night out. The 35-year-old was dropped off at her building on 100 block of Chrystie Street and she had no idea someone was following her
- Three law enforcement sources said officers took the suspect, Assamad Nash, into custody right there at the scene. Nash was covered in blood after he had allegedly stabbed Lee multiple times
The landlord of a New York City woman who was brutally murdered on Sunday says her accused killer "mercilessly stalked" his victim up six flights of stairs before he quietly slipped into her Chinatown apartment.
Christina Yuna Lee was just getting home from a Saturday night out. The 35-year-old was dropped off at her building on 100 block of Chrystie Street and she had no idea someone was following her.
"She opened the door and he just slipped in right behind her. She never even knew he was there," said Lee's landlord, Brian Chin. "She walked up six flights of stairs and this man mercilessly stalked her."
Lee's scream pierces through the building just after 4 a.m. on Sunday. Two young women who live across the hall called 911 and officers got there in minutes. When they arrived, the door was barricaded. Emergency Services Unit personnel had to knock down the steel door and they found Lee's body in her bathroom.
Three law enforcement sources said officers took the suspect, Assamad Nash, into custody right there at the scene. Nash was covered in blood after he had allegedly stabbed Lee multiple times.
Nash, 25, faces murder and burglary charges. Law enforcement sources initially said it did not immediately appear to be a hate crime, and added Monday that it was being investigated as an unprovoked push-in attack.
The officials familiar with the case also said Nash had five prior felonies and three pending court cases on various matters. He is believed to have most recently lived at a homeless shelter on The Bowery.
"She was a wonderful soul, a wonderful person. She had the entire rest of her life ahead of her," Chin remembered Lee.
"This is about the community and our elected officials need to do something much different because this is all avoidable," he added.
Mayor Eric Adams issued a statement Sunday afternoon pledging once again to crack down on the sharp increase in violence in the city.
“I and New Yorkers across the city mourn for the innocent woman murdered in her home last night in Chinatown and stand with our Asian brothers and sisters today," he said in a statement.
For the year to date through Feb. 6, major crimes are up 42% in New York City versus the same period last year. Murder is actually the only category in the index to be down year over year.