Main | Friday, April 23, 2010

Tonight: Protest At Ohio's Miami University After Assault At Gay Fundraiser

Miami University junior Ben Collings says he and his boyfriend were assaulted after objecting to anti-gay comments he heard while attending a Gay/Straight Alliance fundraiser held at an off campus bar. Police are saying Collings initiated the fight.
Collings said that when he was in the restroom, he overheard others using derogatory words for homosexuals. Things got heated after that, he said in the video report filed by WCPO TV in Cincinnati. Collings suffered a broken cheekbone and nose, and had two black eyes. After the fight, he was treated at a hospital and underwent numerous medical tests. He said his injuries may require reconstructive surgery. Oxford police are investigating the fight, but believe that Collings initiated the fight. So far, police have not labeled the crime as a hate crime, but they continue to investigate. "I was assaulted because of my sexual orientation, if you want to define it as that – if you want to define it as assault, that's what it's going to be defined as," Collings told WCPO TV. Collings said he also believes an attack on his boyfriend inside the bar is a hate crime.
Student leaders said such assaults are never labeled a hate crime by local police. A silent protest will be held on campus tonight. Video of Collings' statement at the above link.

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