A transgender woman's death is now being investigated as a hate crime crime by the NYPD, after 21-year-old Islan Nettles was brutally attacked last week, before eventually succumbing to her injuries on Thursday.

Nettles was walking through Harlem with a friend (who was also transgender) last Saturday night when they were attacked by a group of men. One of the group punched Nettles in the face. Witnesses to the crime reported initially that they didn't hear the attackers yelling any anti-gay slurs, but later told the NYPD that the attackers were shouting homophobic remarks.

This follows a surge in recent months in hate crimes in New York City. Gay men have been shot and killed, attacked by Knicks fans in broad daylight, knocked unconscious, and kicked to the ground.

Charges against the suspect, 20-year-old Paris Wilson, haven't been upgraded to a hate crime yet, as police wait on a medical examiner's ruling on the cause of death.