The four attackers who threw garbage bags and a paint can at drag performer Kevin Aviance before brutally beating him in New York’s East Village in June 2006 pleaded guilty to charges last night:
“In exchange for their guilty pleas Gerard Johnson, 17, will be sentenced to 15 years in prison; Akino George and Jarell Sears, both 21, will get eight-year prison terms; and Gregory Archie, 19, receive a six-year sentence. They had faced up to 25 years in prison if they had been convicted of the top count, first-degree assault as a hate crime. Designating an offense a hate crime increases the sentence the judge is allowed to impose.”
Aviance was not able to speak to reporters last June as he left the hospital with his leg in a brace and his mouth wired shut. He showed up later that month at an anti-violence rally, and later sent a message to his attackers: “You chose the wrong queen.” In July, Aviance’s attackers blamed their victim. It appears that now, in exchange for plea deals, they’ve changed their tune.
You may have missed…
Aviance Attackers Blame Victim, Deny Hate Crime [tr]
Aviance to Attackers: You Chose the Wrong Queen [tr]
Gay Bash Victim Kevin Aviance Leaves Hospital [tr]
Singer Kevin Aviance Hospitalized After Anti-Gay Attack [tr]