Hammer attack investigated as hate crime

A brutal assault at San Francisco’s United Nations Plaza on Thursday night that may have left a 51-year-old man with traumatic brain injury is┬ábeing investigated by police as a hate crime.

Police said the assault was reported at about 10 p.m. on New Year’s Day and near the intersection of Hyde and Fulton streets. According to police, the suspect, described as a white man in his 30s, yelled a racial slur at a black man in his 50s and then struck him in the head with a pair of gardening shears and a hammer.

Police said the suspect was arrested and the victim was transported to San Francisco General Hospital with potential traumatic brain injury as a result of the blows to his head and lacerations to his ear and eye.