New York’s ninth reported anti-gay attack happened over the weekend when Eugene Lovendusky, co-founder of the grassroots equality organization Queer Rising, was allegedly assaulted not far from Times Square.
The Huffington Post reports that 19-year-old Manuel Riquelme allegedly assaulted Lovendusky early Saturday morning on West 42nd Street. Sources told New York’s NY1 that Lovendusky, his boyfriend, and another male were leaving the XL nightclub when nine teenagers, Riquelme included, fired off anti-gay slurs. Riquelme was charged with hate crime and aggravated harassment after allegedly hitting Lovendusky in the face.
“The No. 1 feeling going through our community right now is a helpless urgency,” Lovendusky told NY1. “Self-defense classes is the first thing all of us are thinking right now. How do I hit? How do I protect? Am I allowed to carry pepper spray? Am I allowed to carry a gun?”
Earlier this year, the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Statistics announced that nearly two-thirds of hate crimes go unreported to police. According to the bureau, between 2003 and 2006, 46 percent of hate crimes were reported to authorities. From 2007 to 2011, by comparison, only 35 percent of hate crimes were reported.