Did gay slur provoke New Year’s stabbings?
Friends and family of a 19-year-old Atlanta man charged with stabbing five people at a New Year’s Eve party early Tuesday say he was defending himself after anti-gay slurs were directed at him.
On Wednesday, Luke Patrick O’Donovan (photo) appeared in court and was ordered held without bond in the Fulton County Jail on five felony counts of aggravated assault. Atlanta police arrested O’Donovan early Tuesday after a fight in the Reynoldstown neighborhood resulted in five people being stabbed. O’Donovan was also injured in the fracas, which happened during a New Year’s Eve party on Gibson Street.
Witnesses told Atlanta police that O’Donovan and another man were arguing before that man was stabbed. Four other people were injured trying to subdue O’Donovan, according to police accounts. A woman called 911 as she drove several victims to a hospital.
But a commenter on East Atlanta Patch who claims to have witnessed the incident says O’Donovan was called a “faggot” after dancing with men at the party and was attacked.
At the party Luke was seen making out and dancing with other men. He was called a f***** by his attackers and beaten in by a large mob, with numbers being between 8-12 on 1. Luke fought back valiantly and tried to get away from the mob as soon as he could. The story being put out by the media currently has several untruths. Luke never left the party and returned, as has been reported elsewhere. He was not the aggressor in the fight. The “cut” on Luke’s lower back was a stab wound he recieved from his attackers.
Another commenter alleges that “dirtbag homophobes” started the fight.
This gives an outrageously skewed story. The main person O’Donovan fought with instigated the fight by making hateful homophobic comments. O’Donovan was jumped by this person’s friends once their fight escalated, and once the group started mercilessly beating him he pulled out a knife and did what most people in that situation would do. Hopefully the dirtbag homophobes will go down for this and not O’Donovan.
One commenter says the people that were stabbed were only joking with O’Donovan when they called him an anti-gay slur.
He is guilty. He had time to leave and he was fighting just as much as the other guy was. He had no reason to stab the first kid and that first stabbing is the reason people were ganging up on him. They were trying to get the knife away, that’s why so many people got stabbed. None of those guys are homophobic by the way they were joking about calling him a faggot, Luke couldn’t take a joke and started punching one of them and he was defending himself.
O’Donovan’s mother tells Fox 5 that her son acted in self-defense.
Also Wednesday, prisoner support group Atlanta Black Cross issued a statement that O’Donovan was “desperately defending himself.”
The motivations of the attack on Luke seem to originate in the fact that he had been seen dancing with and kissing other men earlier at the party. Luke was repeatedly insulted with homophobic slurs throughout the night. The men who attacked Luke are known to have exhibited homophobic language and behavior in the past. Luke was called a faggot during the fight. This provides clear evidence that the attack on Luke was in some way motivated by homophobia and perpetrated by multiple men while Luke was alone.
A spokesperson for Atlanta police said that the cause of the fight is under investigation. The agency’s LGBT liaisons have also been notified of the incident.
“We have received information that the incident was possibly preceded by a gay slur directed towards the arrestee,” APD’s Carlos Campos says. “We are not sure if the information is credible, but are investigating the incident and will pursue this and any other leads. It should be noted, however, that officers arrested a man identified as stabbing five people. It will be up to the judicial system to determine if there were any mitigating factors prior to the stabbings.”
Police asked that anyone with information about the incident to call Zone 6 investigators at 404-373-5331 or 404-373-5332.
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