On December 2013 student Taj Patterson was walking to his Fort Greene home after a night of fun. Taj’s evening of fun ended when over a dozen ultra-orthodox men attacked him while yelling anti-gay slurs. The attack occurred on Flushing Ave. in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. The NYPD has now charged 5 men with gang assault and a variety of other charges. The five men have not been charged with hate crimes.
“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, at least two of whom belonged to a volunteer patrol called Shomrim, were looking for someone who vandalized cars in the area and stopped Patterson, prosecutors said. Even though the vandalism report was unfounded, they allegedly started pummeling the victim, authorities said. Patterson suffered a broken eye socket, a torn retina, blood clotting, and cuts and bruises to his knee and ankles.
The main instigator kicked him in the face, yelling “stay down, f----t, stay the f--- down,” as others cheered, Patterson recalled.
The NY Daily News has the story.