Main | Monday, September 28, 2009

NYC TV Host Says NYPD Refused To Investigate His Gay-Bashing

Blake Hayes, a NYC-based TV and radio host, says the NYPD refused to investigate after he and two friends were gay-bashed in Hell's Kitchen. From Hayes' blog:
Two punches to the face. Thrown against a car, denting its body. Told we should die of AIDS. Is this what you should expect walking down 9th Ave with a couple friends? I've walked the same block a million times. The place I call "home" is only 2 blocks away. I consider this neighborhood to be made up of friends, neighbors and allies. And yet tonight, it became a threatening, unaccepting place. Walking down this usual block, a friend turned when a lit cigarette butt was thrown at him. "Keep moving, faggot." We all stopped, shocked to hear these words in what is normally such an accepting, gay-friendly neighborhood, in New York, such an open-minded city.

We exchanged words, more and more heated, until he started to approach us, threatening violence. Before we knew it, he had thrown one friend against a car, denting it. The other took two punches to the face, cutting his lip before the bouncer at McCoy's came out and stopped him. We called the police. They arrived -- 5 cops or so, from at least 2 cars. They talked to the guy who assaulted us. They asked us what happened. We recounted the story. The cops -- the NYPD -- did NOTHING. They wouldn't even take the guy's information so we could file a claim later, or even run the plates of the car whose body was dented from him throwing my friend into it. "They're NJ plates, we can't do anything." Being able to marry is one thing. But being able to walk down the street in peace, and to be able to see someone arrested who tries to disrupt that peace -- is a simple human right.
Openly lesbian City Council Speaker Christine Quinn has issued this statement:
Early Saturday morning there was a report of an anti-LGBT attack in Hell’s Kitchen in which two individuals were the victims of a physical assault. I am obviously outraged by news that another bias attack has occurred in our city. But I am also deeply concerned by reports from the victims that NYPD officers responding to the scene did not appropriately recognize the seriousness of the incident. In fact, it has been reported that they failed to attempt to apprehend or even to collect contact information from the alleged assailant. If these reports are true, the behavior of the police officers involved was also outrageous and merits swift action by the police department. In response I have spoken to Police Commissioner Kelly’s office. They have agreed to conduct an investigation of these reports, and to have police officials meet personally with the victims this week. I am very gratified that the police department has agreed to my requests, and urge them to complete a swift and thorough investigation.

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