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Police arrested an alleged purse snatcher who punched a woman so hard in Flushing over the weekend she is now brain dead, police and the Queens district attorney said.
Brian Rodriguez, 35, was arrested Sunday afternoon and charged with robbery and two counts of assault, according to a criminal complaint filed by the DA.
At about 1 a.m. Saturday, a woman named Hai Yan Yang was walking in front of 144-31 41st Ave. in Flushing when a hooded Rodriguez approached her from behind, according the criminal complaint, which relied on surveillance footage that captured the scene.
Yang was carrying a pocketbook, and Rodriguez punched her in the side of her head, causing her to fall on the ground, and then swiped her property, according to the complaint.
Yang was taken to Flushing Hospital and then transferred to a neurological intensive care unit at North Shore-LIJ, according to the complaint.
A doctor there informed police that the woman’s injuries were “not compatible to sustain life.”
She was later pronounced brain dead, according to police sources.
Reach reporter Joe Anuta by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 718-260-4566.
©2012 Community Newspaper Group
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