Update: charges brought against 5 Hasidic men who beat black gay fashion student
In December, we reported that Taj Patterson, a black, gay New York fashion student, was attacked by five Hasidic men while walking home from a night out.
The men have since been charged in connection to the incident.
Patterson, 22, has said he was headed to his Fort Greene home after a night of partying last December when over a dozen ultra-Orthodox men assaulted him on Flushing Ave. in Williamsburg while shouting anti-gay epithets.
Aharon Hollender, 28, Abraham Winkler, 39, Mayer Herskovic, 21, Pinchas Braver, 19, and Joseph Fried, 25, were charged with gang assault and other counts, but not with any hate crimes, authorities said Wednesday.
“We simply cannot allow anyone walking on the streets of Brooklyn to be knocked to the ground, stomped and brutally beaten,” said Brooklyn district attorney Kenneth Thompson.
The group was looking for someone who vandalized cars and the area and stopped Patterson, prosecutors said. Despite the vandalism report being unfounded, they allegedly started pummeling Patterson.
Patterson ended up with a broken eye socket, a torn retina, blood clotting and cuts and bruises to his knee and ankles. The main culprit kicked Patterson in the face as he yelled, “stay down, fa**ot, stay the f*** down” as others cheered.
The men, who face up to 25 years in prison if convicted, were arraigned and released on $25,000 to $50,000 bail Wednesday.
Thoughts on this tragic situation and the fact that the men were not charged with a hate crime?
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