Surveillance video in hate crime Village beating

March 31, 2011 2:42:04 PM PDT
The NYPD has released surveillance video of the vicious beating of a gay man in Lower Manhattan over the weekend.

Police are is pushing hard to find the men responsible for the brutal incident, which is being investigated as a hate crime.

The incident started inside a McDonald's on West 3rd Street and 6th Avenue in Greenwich Village. The suspects were reportedly teasing the victim, 26-year-old Damian Furtch, because he was wearing a pink work shirt, pink belt and pink shoes.

When he went outside, he was hit and did not fight back. It was all caught on a police surveillance camera.


"I noticed some guys staring at me, two guys," Furtch said. "It wasn't until the first punch that I heard, you [expletive]."

He says the suspects threw punches and numerous anti-gay slurs his way.

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly says the investigation is moving forward.

"This is a horrendous event," he said. "We simply are not going to tolerate this in our city."

Police have been searching for clues around the scene of the attack. Their greatest hope, though, is that someone will call with a lead.

Damian suffered two black eyes and a broken nose, needed several stitches as well, but apart from the violence you see in the video, advocates at New York City's Anti-Violence Project notice something else. Cars on West 3rd street that doesn't stop, or a person in a phone booth who saw what happened.

"There are people in the streets, there are cars there and people aren't doing anything about it," said Sharon Stapel.

Police are looking for two Hispanic men between the ages of 18 and 20.

"You attack somebody who is in a community that is not going to stand for this," Furtch said. "We're not going take this lightly. We're not going to stop. And hopefully, you'll be caught."

Barie Shortell is also gay, and he was attacked in Williamsburg, only five weeks ago.

His injuries were so bad, he needed over 9 hours of surgery, so now the news of yet another attack has Barie wondering, could it get any worse?

"I hope that they are aware of how much it affected me, and how much is affects anyone to be that violent," he said.