Aunt speaks out after niece attacked on SEPTA subway train while defending others

Family members are speaking out after a teen was assaulted for trying to protect other victims from being attacked on a SEPTA subway train. 

The family says the young woman who stood up to girls pummeling Asian American students on the train didn’t know the victims, or the attackers but understood courage.

"She did the right thing. She did the right thing," aunt Mei Lu said.

For her act of valor, the 18-year-old unidentified, Central High School senior, with hopes of attending Penn was viciously beaten by four African American girls, ages 13 to 16, who police say will face felony counts of ethnic intimidation and aggravated assault.

RELATED: Ethnic intimidation, assault and related charges filed against teen girls in viral SEPTA attack

"We checked her for a concussion because her head was brutally smashed through the windows, kicked on the floor," Lu added.

An advocacy group for the city’s Asian American population, brought the student’s emotional mother, aunt, and uncle before reporters Friday, who heard the community rally behind the girl.

It was Wednesday on the Broad Street Line when video captured the mid-afternoon attack that’s drawn outrage and calls for greater protection for the school district’s immigrant student population.

"There’s a problem in the school district where immigrant students from all countries experience bullying and don’t feel safe," John Chin with Philadelphia's Chinatown Development Corporation said.

Her family says the 18-year-old has returned to the hospital for treatment of an eye injury.

"She said I’d do the same thing again no matter if the boys are Asian, African American, Caucasian, I will protect them," Lu said.


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