A man attacked and knocked a transgender woman unconscious in Charleston

Charleston Police

Police in Charleston, South Carolina are now saying a man who attacked a transgender woman last Sunday (August 19) used slurs against her gender identity.

Initially, police denied bias was a component of the confrontation.

The incident report identifies the victim as a 34-year-old trans woman. She was leaving Deco Nightclub in the early hours of Sunday with her sister when a man outside got into a confrontation with them.

According to the allegations, the man kicked the woman’s sister in the stomach. That’s when the trans woman moved to defend her sister and the man punched her, knocking her out.

A police officer arrived shortly after and the woman was transported to Medical University Hospital.

A change of narrative

The initial report of the assault gave no indication the man attacked the woman due to her gender identity. Charleston police spokesman Charles Francis said this report came from the responding office, who did not speak to the victim.

Investigators later spoke to the woman and also saw surveillance video of the confrontation.

On Tuesday (28 August), the police came to the conclusion that bias and discrimination played a part.

Chase Glenn, executive director of Alliance for Full Acceptance, said the woman returned to work and is still recovering.

‘We know that instances like this unfortunately instill the climate of fear that exists within the transgender community … and contributes to their resistance to reporting instances of violence,’ he said. ‘We hope to create visibility for this issue.’

H/t: Post and Courier

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Man writes heartless letter about killing gay couple before judge orders execution

Peter Avsenew flipping off the families in the courtroom.

Circuit Judge Ilona Holmes ordered the execution of Peter Avsenew for the murder of a gay couple in 2010.

In January, a jury found Avsenew guilty of killing Steven Adams and Kevin Powell in north Florida. They sentenced him to death. He showed no remorse at the sentencing, and flipped off the victims’ families before being led out of the court room.

‘I have no regrets in my life and I am proud of the decisions I’ve made,’ he told the jury. ‘No one really knows what happened that day.’

Avsenew, 33, killed the couple a few days before Christmas eight years ago, and then stole their car to escape.

Broward County, Florida passed a new last year, saying juries must be unanimous to issue the death sentence.

Holmes could have overturned their sentence, but decided not to.

Avsenew wrote a letter to the judge, revealing his hateful feelings.

‘It is my duty as a white man to cull the weak and timid from existence,’ the letter read. ‘Homosexuals are a disease to mankind and must be put down.’

Missy Badget, a sister of one of the victims, said she was happy Avsenewe got the death penalty after what he did and the gesture he made on the day of sentencing.

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Ohio politician arrested on 26 sex charges involving teenagers

Ohio politician Phillip Garcia

A long-serving Ohio politician has been arrested on 26 felony charges involving sexual misconduct with teenagers. His lawyers say it’s an attack because of his identity as a gay man.

Phillip Garcia, 63, is the councilman for Ward 2 in Conneaut. He is also a member of the Parks and Recreation committee, Economic Development Committee, and Public Service Department/Cemeteries committee.

Authorities indicted Garcia on Tuesday (28 August). They took him to Ashtabula County Jail, where he is being held on the charges. He was being investigated for several months prior to his arrest.

The charges include five counts of rape, four counts of corruption of a minor, and two counts of sexual conduct with a minor. The other 15 are counts of compelling prostitution.

According to court documents, the alleged misconduct took place between 1997 and 2005. Garcia’s apparent victims were five minors between the ages of 13 and 17. Four of the five worked for Garcia’s catering business.

Attorney General DeWine said there are also concerns there may be more victims.

An overzealous hunt?

The law firm DiCaudo, Pitchford & Yoder released a statement for Garcia’s attorney, Reid Yoder.

In it, they state the attack on Garcia is ‘unfair and unjust’. They also state it is happening ‘because he is a homosexual’ and that his actions have been ‘mischaracterized’.

It continues: ‘This indictment is an extreme example of police and prosecutors grossly overcharging a person based on their sexual orientation in attempt to gain media headlines.’

‘Mr. Garcia intends to fight these charges zealously and looks forward to his day in Court where the actual truth will be disclosed,’ the statement ends.

The City of Conneaut also released a statement, expressing their shock of the indictment.

‘The City condemns any act of sexual abuse against anyone at any time, particularly minors,’ it reads. ‘We are deeply concerned for the victims of sexual abuse and that their rights, as well as the rights of those who are accused, are protected.’

Garcia is appearing at an arraignment hearing this afternoon.

H/t: News 5 Cleveland

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