"I am disgusted to hear that a woman of Asian descent was physically assaulted in Manhattan on Tuesday - an attack apparently motivated by the bigoted notion that an Asian person is more likely to carry or transmit the novel coronavirus.
"To be clear: there is zero evidence that people of Asian descent bear any additional responsibility for the transmission of the coronavirus.
"This incident was not only despicable but also illegal, and I am directing the State Police Hate Crimes Task Force to assist in the investigation to make sure the assailant is held accountable.
"No one in this state should ever feel intimidated or threatened because of who they are or how they look. Diversity is our greatest strength - it's one of the things that makes New York great - and in difficult times we need to band together even tighter."