Main | Friday, June 15, 2007

Stiff Sentences Handed Down In Village Stabbing

Last summer a "gang" of seven young black lesbians partying near the Christopher Street piers attacked a passing straight man after he allegedly made a lewd sexual remark about "turning them straight." The man was beaten and stabbed. You may recall me posting about it at the time as part of the still-ongoing debate about the situation with unruly minority teens in the West Village.

Yesterday Patreese Johnson, the 20-year old ringleader of the gang, was sentenced to 11 years in prison for her part in the attack, one of the severest sentences ever given for a non-fatal stabbing. She was convicted of first-degree gang assault. The other women involved received sentences from six months to 8 years. The women had all claimed self-defense, but surveillance video proved otherwise. The man stabbed managed to get in one last insult on the witness stand, calling Johnson the "one slightly pretty" member of the gang.

I fear that those advocating for a police clampdown on gay youth in the West Village will use this verdict as ammunition in their quest, but it should be noted that all those charged in this case are actually adults.

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