Gay Man Beaten During Detroit Gay Pride

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Tuesday Jun 10, 2014
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Christin Howard
Christin Howard   (Source:WXYZ)

A gay man was beaten during Detroit’s gay pride parade Sunday and the attack was caught on video, Detroit’s ABC-affiliate station WXYZ reports.

In the video, taken by a bystander, Christin Howard, a 20-year-old stylist, is seen fighting off attackers as Detroit’s gay pride parade occurred nearby.

According to Howard, between five to eight men assaulted him while he remained helpless on the ground. He adds that the attack was unprovoked and that it happened when he was getting a picture taken with a friend -- that’s when the young men started circling Howard and commenting on his long hair.

They allegedly used anti-gay slurs and threatened violence.

"They were gay bashing me, basically," Howard told WXYZ. "I thought I was going to die. At one point I thought they was going to kill me."

The attack, according to the news station, lasted one minute. Howard says at one point someone said they had a gun, but no gun was seen on the footage of the attack.

Howard’s livelihood has been affected as he cannot cut hair until his hands heal. Additionally, he says the attack left him emotionally damaged. He suffered a bruised and bloody eye, abrasions and a broken finger. He also says he hasn’t slept since the incident. He adds that he is not sure he’d go back to gay pride.

"Will I go back to pride? I’m kind of iffy about it right now, because I don’t want that incident to happen again, what if the same guys are there?" he told the station.

According to WXYZ, this is the first time there’s been violence during Motor City’s 43-year annual pride festival.

Howard says he’s filed a complaint with police, who will investigate the attack as a hate crime. No one has been arrested yet.

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