Police in New York city said Thursday they have arrested and charged a woman with assaulting a Thai chef who was the victim of a random, vicious attack in which a boy killed her cat in a public park.
Evelyn Serrano, 42, was arrested and charged with assault this morning after the case drew wide interest, with #JusticeforPonzu trending on several social platforms in response to Suchanan “Rung” Aksornnan’s plea for justice for Ponzu, her Instagram-famous, 3-year-old British shorthair.
“Today I see the power of every Thai’s voice to bring this case to public attention, which helps move it forward,” Suchanan had told reporters on Wednesday, before going on to quote Game of Thrones’ character Littlefinger. “There is no justice in this world, not unless we make it.”
Suchanan had also said she was going to a police station today to provide more information about the now high-profile case and had been contacted by the Thai consular office, which offered its assistance.
It was late afternoon on April 4 when Suchanan was walking her pets – dog Tofu, parakeet Mango, and cats Ponzu and Kimchi – in a public Brooklyn park when she says a boy sprinted toward her and snatched Ponzu’s leash so hard the cat flew into the air and fell to the ground. The boy then dragged the cat, which already suffered a heart condition, a few meters. The kitty later died of his injuries.
“I was really shocked,” Suchanan told Siamtown US, a Thai newspaper based in Los Angeles. “As soon as I got over my shock, I ran after the boy, who didn’t even apologize.”
Suchanan had not replied to messages sent Thursday as of publication time.
According to accounts shared online by Suchanan and witnesses, she confronted the boy and his family, identified by police as Puerto Rican nationals, who defended the child and berated Suchanan for walking a cat in public. The confrontation escalated into a verbal and physical attack, and Suchanan said she was slapped in the face, strangled and kicked while Suchanan’s boyfriend was punched, breaking his nose. The couple said they were rescued by passers-by.
Suchanan is the owner of Baoburg, a restaurant on Manhattan Avenue. She was born and raised in Chiang Rai until she was 15, when she moved to the United States with her family. Her pets of three different species – dog, parakeet and cats – are widely admired for their odd friendship.
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