The 16-year-old victim of a random Whitestone slashing attack last month stood before multiple media outlets in Flushing on Thursday to accept a crowdfunding effort set up by Assemblyman Ron Kim for her recovery and future education.
Chinese exchange student Jia-Jia Liang had been on her way to school when she was sliced in the face and throat by anonymous, box-cutter wielding man on Dec. 18. He approached her from behind near the intersection of 147th Street and 13th Avenue, reportedly wearing a surgical mask and gloves.
Liang had been alone with family members in Whitestone while she attended school, but her mother has traveled in from China and was standing beside her during the press conference. Through an interpreter, she said the doctors who cared for her have done a wonderful job and thanked the community for their support and consideration.
According to Kim, the girl required 200 stitches to close her wounds.
His online fundraising page aims to reach $75,000 which will be put into a trust fund for Liang, who is in the U.S. on a student visa and wants to stay to pursue a higher education.
The funds can be only used for her education or cosmetic surgery to minimize scarring, and will be managed by her family members and a lawyer who has been working with the family pro-bono.
Assemblyman Kim pledged that his office would do everything possible to help Liang recover and return to her studies. He said the otherwise sleepy community of Whitestone has been shocked by the attacks.
“It’s every parents worst nightmare, and that’s why I think so many people are stepping up to be supportive and give this poor girl a chance to get back on her feet,” Kim said.