Window of gay bar in Hell's Kitchen smashed by rock

Kemberly Richardson Image
Monday, November 21, 2022
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It was a busy Saturday night in Hell's Kitchen where cameras captured a man hurling a huge rock at the front window at Vers. Kemberly Richardson has the details.

HELL'S KITCHEN, Manhattan (WABC) -- It was a busy Saturday night in Hell's Kitchen where cameras captured a man hurling a huge rock at the front window at Vers - it has happened four times and three in just the last week.

David DeParolesa, owner of the gay bar on 9th Avenue, tells Eyewitness News he chose to install laminated glass, fearing this would happen.

Although it is not clear why the suspect targeted this location, DeParolesa says it is particularly upsetting given the horrific mass shooting in Colorado Springs.

"We need to get out the word, and that's why we are talking," he says.

Sources say the deadly attack in Colorado unfolded during a drag show in what is considered a safe space.

Another safe space is Tito Murphy's on West 46th Street, where they held a moment of silence for those that were lost in their community.

The hosts say they are filled with mixed emotions performing on Sunday.

"I use my drag and my platform as a way to connect with people even if not on a serious note of something traumatic, great, or uplifting. We share success as well as failures and anything else we go through," said Zaccary Belliveau.

Governor Hochul announced police are stepping up surveillance and protection for communities at risk of hate crimes.

At Brunch Harlem on West 119th Street, co-owner Joe Morris says he and his partner are proud queer people of color and are thinking about all those touched by Saturday's violence.

"My heart is broken, I remember Pulse not too many years ago and all the way back to Marsha P Johnson. It's debilitating when you think people, trying to live their truth, are being targeted and murdered," Morris said.

ALSO READ | Mother seeking answers when son found dead after night out in NYC

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