Feds step in, new video airs of anti-gay beating
New video has surfaced of a brutal anti-gay assault in Southwest Atlanta as federal prosecutors say they are looking at the case to see if it may fall under a federal hate crime law.
A 30-second video of the beating was posted to the hip hop website Worldstar on Sunday and was first reported by the Smoking Gun on Monday. The video depicts a group of men as they ambush the victim as he walks out of a grocery store on McDaniel Street in Southwest Atlanta.
Late Monday, CBS Atlanta aired a video (top) of the attack that it says is from surveillance cameras at the grocery store. It shows a second view of the attack and includes a tire being thrown on the victim.
The man is beaten, kicked and has debris thrown on him as someone repeatedly yells “No faggots in Jack City.” The attackers are reportedly part of an Atlanta street gang called the Pittsburgh Jack City Gang.
Atlanta police were alerted to the video and attack on Monday by the Smoking Gun, They quickly launched an investigation that included its gang unit and LGBT liaisons as well as federal Homeland Security officials.
Also Monday, U.S. Attorney Sally Quillian Yates said prosecutors and the FBI are looking at the case to see if it violates the federal hate crime law.
“Combating violent gang activity in our District, including the Pittsburgh community, is a priority of this office, as are any potential civil rights violations based on a person’s sexual orientation,” Yates says in a prepared statement. “Along with the Atlanta Police Department, we are working to determine if the actions portrayed in the video violate federal law, including the hate crime statute. The actions depicted in the video are appalling and unacceptable in our community, and we encourage anyone with information about this video to contact the FBI or Atlanta Police.”
Atlanta police told WSB on Monday that they have no record of the attack being reported. The store owner wasn’t aware of the incident and did not call police, according to WSB.
“The Atlanta Police Department is working to determine more about the attack depicted on this video, including attempting to identify the victim and the perpetrators,” spokesperson Carlos Campos says in a prepared statement. “We encourage the victim to come forward to discuss the incident with investigators.”
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