An angry spa customer in Queens pulled out a hammer and attacked two workers who refused to include a “happy ending” for his foot massage, and the NYPD has released video of the brutal attack in the hopes of identifying the perpetrator.
The incident happened late on Saturday, when police say the man walked into the Tao Spa Bodywork near Main Street in Flushing at 10:30 p.m. and paid for a foot massage. As the New York Daily News reported, surveillance video showed the man demanding a refund from the 55-year-old worker after she turned down his request for an “erotic massage.”
The man then pulled out a hammer and dragged the woman into the waiting room, where he punched her in the face. When other employees rushed to help her, the man grabbed another 56-year-old woman by the throat and threw her against the wall.
The employees then gave the man $40 so he would leave, but he smashed a piggy bank and stole tip money before leaving, the New York Daily News reported. All of the employees injured in the attack were treated and released, and police said they did not have any serious injuries.
The attack took place in a busy area of Queens, filled with all-night restaurants and shops. It was not clear if there were any other witnesses to the attack, and police did not say where the man fled after the attack.
Police are now turning to the public for help in identifying the attacker. Footage of the brutal assault was shared across New York media, with ABC 7 showing video that gave a clear glimpse of the man’s face as he launched the attack.
Afterward, one of the victims said she was too afraid to return to work. Others who work in the area said they commend the spa workers for the bravery they showed in confronting the man. They said many employees can treat them like sex workers.
“Massage places shouldn’t do that. Maybe men want that, but women don’t want to do that. They have families. They just want to make a living,” said Emily Chen, 30, a restaurant worker across the street.
Police have not yet identified the suspect, but said he was a Hispanic man between the ages of 20 and 30, around 5-foot-6 and 160 pounds with dark hair. Because he had a hammer with him, they believe the suspect may have been a construction worker.