A commuter charged with kicking a pregnant woman in the stomach cried as he left court.
Michael Lee, 40, allegedly kicked Natasha Rodney twice during an argument in the New York subway during rush hour.
The pair are said to have bumped into each other before Ms Rodney pushed Mr Lee to the floor. The man’s lawyer said he was protecting himself from the attack by Ms Rodney, who is due to give birth at the end of this month, the New York Daily News reported.
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Doctors found Ms Rodney, 28, and her baby were unharmed.
Mr Lee’s lawyer, Lance Fletcher, said: “My client is in a position where he is fending off a violent attack from this woman and we don’t have a lot of the details here. Who responds to something that way on the subway train?
“I believe ultimately this case is not going to be indicted.”
But assistant district attorney Joseph Abrams told Manhattan Supreme Court: “This was a violent attack on a … pregnant woman on a crowded rush hour subway train.”
Mr Lee, who is reportedly married with a young daughter, was released on bail and shared a tearful hug with his brother outside court, the Daily News said.
He will next appear in court on April 26.