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HATE CRIMES

Out on Bail: Suspects in Beating of Same-Sex Couple Holding Hands Released – Hate Crime Charges?

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The four men suspected of beating a same-sex couple at a gay pride event in Miami turned themselves in to police on Tuesday and were released Wednesday morning on bail (video below). The Miami police department had said via Twitter it expected felony charges but did not mention hate crimes charges.

Two of the victims (the third was a bystander who jumped in to defend the couple) say the four suspects shouted anti-gay slurs at them in Spanish.

No hate crime charges have been decided yet.

The suspects are Juan Carlos Lopez, 21; Luis M. Alonso Piovet, 20; Adonis Diaz, 21; and Pablo Reinaldo Romo-Figueroa. The Miami Herald reports they “are charged with aggravated battery, but the charges could be enhanced under state law if they are classified as hate crimes.”

The State Attorney for Miami-Dade County, Katherine Fernandez Rundle, said via Twitter the “Hate Crimes Unit will evaluate this incident thoroughly.”

“That makes me happy that, at least, they were nice enough to admit that they committed the crimes,” one of the victims, Dimitri Lugonov, told ABC 10 News. “It’s not over yet, but the main part is done.”

His partner, Rene Chalarca, added: “We were together. So for me, it’s like, yes, it was a hate crime.”

Citing an arrest affidavit, ABC 10 adds that “one of the suspects bumped into one of the victims before words were exchanged.”

“Police said the suspects started shouting gay slurs in Spanish and then began throwing punches, beating the men so badly that one told police he was unconscious after several hits to his head.”

Watch via NBC 6:

 

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HATE CRIMES

Father Speaks Out After His Teen Daughter Is Told ‘Kill Yourself’ in ‘Ignorant and Hateful’ Anti-LGBT Attack

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A father is speaking out after his high school-aged teen daughter, a lesbian, was the target of harassment and vandalism at their Chicago-area home.

In what police say is a possible hate crime, attackers left a message on a “For Sale” sign: the 800 number to a suicide prevention hotline and the words, “go f*cking KYS.” KYS is shorthand for “kill yourself.” The attackers for reasons unknown also left dozens of white plastic forks strewn across the lawn.

“Suicide is real and tragic. It’s not a joke, it affects way too many families and it is truly hateful to wish it upon another individual,” Scott Nelles, the father of the victim, said at a village meeting, Chicago’s ABC 7 reports.

“The words ‘Go F—ing KYS’ in that barely literate juvenile handwriting will forever remain in my family’s life and those coward’s actions are likely to fade away to those involved as they continue to live an ignorant and hateful existence,” Nelles added.

“Hate is taught. It is not taught in our schools and it’s not taught in our community at large. Kindness is an easy choice. Love wins,” he concluded.

Locals applauded him.

 

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HATE CRIMES

Horrific Homophobic Violence in London: Men Beat Up Lesbian Couple Who Refused to Kiss in Front of Them

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A same-sex couple traveling on a double-decker bus in London say they were beaten bloody by four men after they refused to kiss in front of them.

Melania Geymonat, who is 28, told BBC News she experiences “a lot of verbal violence all the time,” but has never been physically attacked for being gay.

“There were at least four of them,” Geymonat wrote about the May 30 hate crime on her Facebook page on Wednesday, calling it “CHAUVINIST, MISOGYNISTIC AND HOMOPHOBIC VIOLENCE.”

“They started behaving like hooligans, demanding that we kissed so they could enjoy watching, calling us ‘lesbians’ and describing sexual positions,” she says.

“It was only them and us there. In an attempt to calm things down, I started making jokes. I thought this might make them go away. Chris even pretended she was sick, but they kept on harassing us, throwing us coins and becoming more enthusiastic about it.”

“The next thing I know is that Chris is in the middle of the bus fighting with them,: she continues. “On an impulse, I went over there only to find her face bleeding and three of them beating her up. The next thing I know is I’m being punched. I got dizzy at the sight of my blood and fell back. I don’t remember whether or not I lost consciousness. Suddenly the bus had stopped, the police were there and I was bleeding all over. Our stuff was stolen as well. I don’t know yet if my nose is broken, and I haven’t been able to go back to work, but what upsets me the most is that VIOLENCE HAS BECOME A COMMON THING.”

BBC News reports Scotland Yard is investigating and examining CCTV footage.

“There were 2,308 homophobic hate crimes across London in 2018, compared with 2014 when 1,488 were recorded, according to the Met Police’s crime dashboard,” the BBC adds.

Image via Facebook

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HATE CRIMES

Hindu Temple Latest Victim of Vandalism and Hate Speech

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Louisville's mayor, Greg Fischer, addresses crowd at temple.

A 17-year-old white male is behind bars, suspected of vandalizing a Hindu temple in an attack on the religion.

The break in, which occurred on Tuesday at the Swaminarayan Temple in Louisville, Kentucky, included the defacing of religious art at the side as well as graffiti claiming “Jesus is the only Lord.” Another message spray painted onto a bulletin board labeled temple attendees as “foreign b*****s.”

Several doors were also broken into, and a knife was stabbed into one of the chairs at the temple. 

Hate crimes have been on the rise in the United States, with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s most recent hate crime statistics showing a 23% increase in bias crimes based on religion, with the majority of that was a 37% increase anti-Jewish hate crimes.

Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad offered extra security to the temple to help worshippers feel safe at the temple. 

“To come into the temple today and to see the words of hate, the paint on the posters, the desecration of this temple is heartbreaking,” Conrad told reporters at a press conference held on the site.

The Mayor of Louisville, Greg Fischer, also spoke out, telling reporters that Louisville is a “proudly diverse city, a welcoming city. We’re a global city. We’re a compassionate city. That’s who we are, who we choose to be, and we’ll always be that way… and anytime we see hatred or bigotry in our city, we will stand up against it.”

The 17-year-old, who’s name, has not been released, has been charged with 1st degree criminal mischief and 3rd degree burglary.

Image via screen capture from video source.

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