Sharon Williams, 50, went to the nail salon Tuesday afternoon and is accused of making anti-Asian statements and “having physically threatened people in,” said NYPD spokesman Det. Denise Moroney.
Williams then went out of the salon and reportedly began yelling and threatening violence against an Asian woman, police said. CNN contacted the salon to comment on the incident.
A complaint filed by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office clarified that the woman harassed outside was an undercover cop and eventually arrested Williams.
“Asian undercover agents are working in areas where hate crimes have been committed to address the problem,” the NYPD tweeted Wednesday. “Yesterday, one of those officers was able to intervene and make an arrest during an anti-Asian incident in the @ NYPD5Pct, marking the first arrest by this new initiative.”
The NYPD said she had been arrested for harassment related to a hate crime, aggravated race / religion-based harassment, and criminal offense.
The district attorney’s office eventually charged Williams with a charge of second-degree harassment, a felony. The charge is used when the accused “intends to harass, annoy or threaten another person” based on “a belief and perception as to race, color, national origin” or other identity characteristics of that person, according to the legal language.
Because of the charges, Williams was not eligible for bail, the prosecutor’s office said. It was not immediately clear how Williams pleaded.
CNN has contacted Williams’s attorney for comment.
CNN’s Lauren M. Johnson contributed to this report.