Mother, daughter attacked, robbed at hotel near JFK

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NEW YORK (AP) -- The mother of a college student headed for a semester abroad was robbed and shot by a gunman wearing a black ski mask in a frightening encounter outside a hotel near Kennedy Airport.

The 53-year-old victim was in critical condition after the Thursday night attack in the parking lot of a Hampton Inn. According to a police report, the woman and her 20-year-old daughter arrived about 8:15 p.m. Thursday from Baltimore. The daughter, a student at Lehigh University in Pennsylvania, was planning to take a Friday morning flight to travel to study abroad in Cape Town, South Africa.

The mother went inside to check-in, leaving the daughter in the passenger seat outside the front door of the hotel. Meanwhile, a white Volkswagen Jetta pulled up alongside their SUV and a masked gunman threatened the daughter, stole her rings and pistol-whipped her, police said. He got into the driver's seat and moved the car to a secluded part of the parking lot.

"If your mother doesn't have any money, I'm going to shoot you," he said, according to the report.

A few moments later, the mother went outside, looking for the car, then walked over to it and saw the gunman getting out of the driver's side. She said he demanded her purse, and she refused. The two struggled before the suspect pistol-whipped her. She tried to fight back, but he shot her once in the torso, the report said.

He ran from the scene with her purse into the waiting getaway car, police said.

The daughter was hospitalized and received staples in her head. The mother underwent surgery but is stable, police said.

Police were searching for any information on getaway driver or gunman, and the white Jetta. No arrests have been made. The gunman was described as about 5 foot 10, wearing a black Columbia jacket, black pants and black sneakers, along with the black ski mask.