A man has attacked a Muslim woman at a New York branch of Dunkin' Donuts, throwing hot coffee over her and accusing her of a being a “terrorist”.
Nathan Gray, 34, reportedly told his 21-year-victim he “hated Muslims” and threatened to kill her.
He then hit her with his bag and put her in a headlock, according to police.
Officers were called and arrested Mr Gray at the scene. He was charged with assault as a hate crime.
The attacker walked into the donut shop near Seventh Avenue in Manhattan in the middle of the afternoon and asked for a cup of coffee, an unnamed Dunkin' Donuts employee told the New York Daily News.
She said: “I gave him coffee and he said something to me about terrorists, but I couldn't hear what he was saying. He walked away from me and sat next to a group of Muslim women.
“He started talking to them and I could hear him saying, 'Terrorists!''
The women initially ignored Mr Gray but he continued shouting, leading to an argument.
The employee said: “One woman called him ‘stupid.’ So he threw his hot coffee in her face.
“It was hot, hot coffee. She could have been burned. Then he swung his bag at her and it hit her in the face.”
The incident occurred after New York authorities launched a campaign to fight Islamophobia in the city.
The number of anti-Muslim attacks has risen across the United States in the weeks following Donald Trump’s election as US President.
Earlier this month, a New York police officer was called a “terrorist” and told “You shouldn’t be working for this city” after being attacked while wearing a head scarf.
It was the third Islamophobic attack in New York in a week, after another off-duty police officer was assaulted and a Muslim woman on a train was verbally abused.
Mr Trump has previously promised to ban all Muslims from entering the US, calling for a “total and complete shutdown” until the threat from terrorism is better understood.
Independent News Service