Unfinished Lives

Remembering LGBT Hate Crime Victims

See How Your Senators Voted on the Matthew Shepard Act

Visit http://www.govtrack.us/congress/vote.xpd?vote=s2009-327 for more information.

Standard projection from GovTrack

Standard projection from GovTrack

October 24, 2009 Posted by | Legislation, Matthew Shepard Act, U.S. Senate, Uncategorized, Washington, D.C. | , , , , | Comments Off on See How Your Senators Voted on the Matthew Shepard Act

Vicious Queens, NY Attack Highlights Need for a Federal Hate Crimes Law

Jack Price speaks from his hospital bed (NY Daily News photo).

Jack Price speaks from his hospital bed (NY Daily News photo).

Queens, NY – Two attackers beat a 49-year-old gay man within an inch of his life in the early morning hours of Friday October 8 near a 24-hour delicatessen where he had stopped to buy a pack of cigarettes.  Jack Price, described by friends as a likable man who went out of his way to help members of the community, was assaulted in the middle of the street in full view of the deli’s surveillance camera.  Two neighborhood men who allegedly carried out what authorities are calling a hate crime attack, Daniel Rodriguez, 21, and Daniel Aleman, 26, were identified by investigators from a close review of the surveillance video, punching, stomping, kicking, and slapping the victim.  Aleman was taken into custody and arraigned on October 11, and Rodriguez, who fled the state, was arrested in Norfolk, VA on October 13.  Both men are charged with felony hate crime assault.  The victim, who fought for his life in ICU at New York Queens Hospital, suffered a broken jaw, fractured ribs, a lacerated spleen and a collapsed lung in the beating.  He recovered enough to describe the crime scenario to reporters for the New York Daily News from his hospital bed.  As he was on his way home, Price said, he saw Rodriguez and Aleman, both of whom he recognized from the College Point Queens neighborhood, approaching him.  In Spanish, the two men called Price “a stupid f_____” and “a dumb f_____,” not realizing that Price spoke Spanish and could understand them.  Price stepped into the deli to buy cigarettes, thinking that his two assailants would leave, but they were waiting for him in the street when he came out of the shop, and reignited the confrontation.  Price recalled that one of the men threatened him, “I know where you live, f_____.”  The second man added, “You better run away before he kills you.”  Then the physical attack commenced.  Miraculously, he somehow survived the savage beating and managed to get home before losing consciousness.  Though Price says he does not remember very much about the beating, he says that when he regained consciousness in the hospital, he was surprised and relieved to be alive.  As for his alleged attackers, Price told the Daily News, “I hope they rot in jail…I don’t understand how someone can do this to somebody.  They almost killed another human being.”  City officials immediately decried the attack as an anti-gay hate crime, including City Council Speaker Christine Quinn, NY City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, and City Councilmember John Liu.

Leviticus 18:22 tattoo (News 7 photo).

Leviticus 18:22 tattoo (News 7 photo).

They are calling for the full penalty appropriate to a hate crime assault to be applied to the attackers, if proven guilty.  Hundreds of local citizens marched in protest of the attack, calling for an end to anti-LGBT violence in New York City on October 17.  Supporters of Rodriguez and Aleman have mounted their own rally, denying that the “incident” was a bias-motivated crime, according to yournabe.com.  Both the father and sister of Rodriguez have denied that he is anti-gay.  One of Rodriguez’s chief supporters proudly sported a tattoo on his forearm bearing a quotation from the Hebrew Scriptures, Leviticus 18:22, “You shall not lie with a male as one does a woman.  It is an abomination.” While the tattooed supporter denied that homophobia was a motivation in the assault, he said he has no problem with punishing gay people for their behavior.

October 24, 2009 Posted by | Beatings and battery, Bludgeoning, gay men, harassment, Hate Crimes, Heterosexism and homophobia, Latino and Latina Americans, Legislation, Matthew Shepard Act, New York, Perpetrators of Hate Crime, Slurs and epithets, Stomping and Kicking Violence, Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Comments Off on Vicious Queens, NY Attack Highlights Need for a Federal Hate Crimes Law

   

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