A Timeline Of The 7 Anti-Gay Attacks In NYC This Month
As Americans celebrate the life of slain activist Harvey Milk and prepare for Gay Pride Month, a rash of anti-gay hate crimes has struck New York City's LGBT community. There have been 29 anti-gay hate crimes reported in NYC so far this year compared with 14 at this point last year.
1. Sunday, May 5
Nick Porto and his partner Kevin Atkins were leaving brunch around 5 p.m. when they were attacked by a group of men, all wearing Knicks jerseys, yelling gay slurs outside of Madison Square Garden. Some reports indicate the group comprised four men. Other reports say that the New York Police Department is currently looking for eight suspects.
2. Tuesday, May 7
A man was assaulted in Union Square Park by an assailant who reportedly was using anti-gay slurs. A suspect is now in custody.
3. Wednesday, May 8
A man was trying to hail a cab outside of Pieces, a gay bar in Greenwich Village, when he was attacked by two men yelling gay slurs. Fortunately, he didn't sustain serious injuries.
4. Thursday, May 9
In Midtown, near the 33rd Street PATH station, two gay men were attacked by a group of men screaming gay slurs. Two of the alleged suspects were immediately arrested by Port Authority police officers.
5. Saturday, May 18
Mark Carson and his partner walking around Greenwich Village just after midnight on Saturday when a man called them "faggots" and asked if they were "gay wrestlers." The initial encounter took place on Sixth Avenue.
The suspect, identified by police as Elliot Morales, 33, asked the two men, "You all want problems?" before following them to Eighth Avenue, where he then asked Carson, "Are you with him?"
Mark Carson answered "yes" and was then shot in the head with a pistol allegedly fired by Mr. Morales. NYPD has charged Morales with second-degree murder. As he was taken into custody, the suspect reportedly laughed and bragged, "I shot him in the face."
6. Monday, May 20, 5:30 p.m. — Rally Against Hate Violence
"What was his name? His name was Mark Carson!" chanted thousands of New Yorkers who joined Edie Windsor and Speaker of the New York City Counsel Christine Quinn to rally against hate violence. The group marched from the city's LGBT center to the site where Carson was fatally shot.
7. Monday, May 20, around 10:45 p.m.
Monday evening, Dan Contarino, a former club promoter, was drinking with a friend he had known for about a month. The friends stopped for pizza and talked about the fact that Contarino is gay. According to NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly, who later commented on the attack, "Suddenly, according to the victim, his assailant just snapped." Police are now searching for the 39-year-old suspect. Contarino was treated and released from Bellevue Hospital.
8. Tuesday, May 21, around 5:20 a.m.
A gay couple was attacked in SoHo by two men yelling gay slurs. The incident took place on Broadway, between Prince and Houston streets. The NYPD has since charged Fabian Ortiz, 32, and Pedro Jimenez, 23, with assault.
9. Tuesday, May 21, afternoon — Mayor Bloomberg and NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly Hold a Press Conference
During the press conference, Mayor Bloomberg spoke on Mark Carson's murder, observing that the tragedy "brought back awful memories for people who were once afraid to walk down the street with the person that they loved." Commissioner Kelly noted that in spite of a 30% decrease in overall crime in NYC since last year, hate crimes have increased by 70% within that same period. Kelly also offered more information regarding Dan Contarino's attack Monday evening.