A 10-year-old Pennsylvania boy admitted in Family Court on Tuesday that he attacked and robbed a Vietnamese immigrant, in what the judge called a "hate crime."
The boy apologized directly to 50-year-old Minh Tran for "hitting you with rocks and sticks and breaking into your home," The Philadelphia Daily News reports.
Tran, who spoke through an interpreter, accepted the apology.
Cops say Tran was sleeping in her small apartment in Philadelphia on Aug. 6 when the boy, his 7-year-old brother and an unknown man entered the home and assaulted her. They attacked her with a stick, rope, rocks, a plunger, and a potted plant, then took $20 from her purse and a bracelet.
Tran's landlord told ABC News affiliate WPVI that he found her on her knees in her back yard, crying and begging for help.
"She said, 'I'm so scared. I'm so scared. The three boys came to attack me,'" he said. "And I said: 'What happened, Minh?' and she kneeled down and said please please protect me."
The boy reportedly told the judge he "didn't like the lady" and the way she "stared" at him. The boy, who is being treated for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, faces juvenile detention or probation.
"We have a long road to travel," Judge Kevin Dougherty told the boy on Tuesday. "We're going to find out why you have hate in your heart for someone who doesn't look like you."