San Fransisco : A 68-year-old Sikh man has been stabbed to death in California’s Fresno city on January 1, prompting police to launch a hate crime probe into the city’s first homicide, reports PTI.

Gurcharan Singh Gill, an employee at local liquor store at Shields Express in West Shields Avenue was at work when he was stabbed to death during broad day light, Lieutenant Mindy Casto said.

While investigations are still on-going, local community members feel Gill was attacked due to his identity and skin colour, Casto said.

When officers of Fresno Police Department arrived at the scene they found an elderly man lying in the shop. Emergency medical team tried to provide first-aid but it was determined that Gill had already died, Fresno Bee reported.

The motive and cause of death are not known yet. His death marked the city’s first homicide of 2016, police said.

On December 28, another elderly Sikh man was brutally assaulted by two persons in Fresno. No arrests have been made in either cases.

The police have appealed to the local people to report if they find any leads to the incident.

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