Seattle Police arrested two men for hate crime attacks over Pride weekend, and are also searching for another group of suspects who attacked a gay couple on Capitol Hill.
In the first incident, officers responded to Pike St. and Boylston Ave around 2 AM Sunday after a gay couple reported they had been attacked by a group of suspects, who told them they were “celebrating Pride, too.”
The victim told police he was sitting on the street when one of the victims struck him in the hand.
When the victim asked the suspect what he was doing, he responded “we’re celebrating Pride, too,” followed by an anti-gay slur. The suspect then punched the victim in the face, knocking him to the ground.
The victim’s boyfriend intervened, but the two other male suspects joined the attack, knocking the second victim to the ground as well. The suspects then repeatedly kicked the victims as they lay on the pavement.
One victim sustained a possible broken nose and scrapes in the assault. The other victim had a tooth knocked out in the attack, and sustained possible broken hand.
The victims described the three attackers as a black male wearing a blue and white striped shirt and jeans, a heavy set black male wearing a white shirt and jeans, and a white male, approximately 5’11, 140 pounds, with blonde hair. The victims also said two women accompanied the suspects during the attack. The victims were only able to describe one woman as asian, and the other as black.
About 15 hours later, around 5:15 PM, police received a report of another case of malicious harassment downtown. The victim flagged down a bike officer in the 1900 block of Westlake Ave and pointed to a man on the street, who he believed had just threatened him with a weapon. The victim said he walking down the street when he bumped into the suspect, who swore at the victim and used a homophobic slur. The suspect then reportedly pressed something into the victim’s stomach—the victim told police he believed it was a gun—and asked him “is your life worth that much?”
As the suspect walked off, the victim noticed SPD Sergeant Rob Brown riding by, told him about the incident and pointed out the suspect down the street. Sgt. Brown called other officers to the scene, who took the suspect into custody. The 23-year-old man again used an anti-gay slur while referring to the victim, who was wearing rainbow-colored beads during the incident.
Police booked the suspect into the King County Jail for malicious harassment, Washington’s statute for hate crime attacks. Officers were unable to locate a weapon on the suspect.
Officers made a second malicious harassment arrest Sunday, after a man and woman attacked a transgender victim near Yale Ave. and Denny Way.
The victim was walking east on Denny Way near Yale Ave around 8:45 PM when the suspects approached and asked “did you enjoy your parade?” followed by an anti-gay slur. The male suspect then punched the victim in the face several times as the woman jumped on the victim’s back. The attack left the victim sprawled on the sidewalk. The male suspect put his foot on the victim’s head before fleeing the scene with his accomplice.
The victim called 911 and received medical attention at the scene. The victim then drove around with SPD officers as they searched for the suspects. Police found the 35-year-old male suspect at Eastlake Ave. and Mercer St. and booked him into the King County Jail for malicious harassment. Police are still working to locate his female accomplice.
SPD’s Bias Crimes detectives are investigating all three of the incidents. They do not currently believe any of the attacks are connected. If you have any information about the Pike and Boylston incident, please contact detectives at (206) 233-5000.