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Gay Bashing Air Force Sergeant Stripped of Rank

Air Force Staff Sergeant Benjamin Ford, accused in the September 2009 NYC anti-gay assault on Blake Hayes, Alec Bell, and Danny Calvert, and recently tracked to a base outside of London, has been stripped of his rank and disciplined by the military, the NY Daily News reports:

Ford"Air Force Staff Sgt. Benjamin Ford, a master at defusing bombs, accepted the charges against him rather than face a court-martial, said victim Blake Hayes, who was informed of the punishment by an Air Force Lt. colonel. 'Die of AIDS, you f----- queers!' Ford screamed during the attack. He copped to three counts of assault and battery and other charges. Ford also wrote apology letters to Hayes and his pals.

Ford was a Bronze Star recipient. There is no word on any further prosecution.

Previously...
NYC Gay Basher Id'ed as Air Force Sgt Stationed Near London [tr]
NYPD to Victim of Anti-Gay Attack: 'It Has to Be Something Bigger' [tr]
Man Gay Bashed in NYC, Claims NYPD Negligent in Response [tr]

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Comments

  1. The tide is turning, but not nearly harsh enough, IMO.

    Does anyone else think this guy looks a bit like Lee Harvey Oswald?

    Posted by: johnny | Feb 4, 2010 8:59:02 AM


  2. For someone who diffuses bombs, he sure has anger management problems

    Posted by: ravewulf | Feb 4, 2010 9:12:28 AM


  3. Finally, a relatively appropriate slap-down to someone who committed an anti-gay crime. I still think he should have been criminally prosecuted, but at least it's a start...

    Posted by: CKNJ | Feb 4, 2010 10:01:32 AM


  4. What does that mean, "disciplined by the military"?

    Sounds like he wiggled out of a worst-case-outcome but will keep some military benefits.

    d-bag.

    Posted by: stephen | Feb 4, 2010 10:02:04 AM


  5. Accepting charges for assault probably means military prison. It's a very highly regulated punishment, unlike conventional civil prisons. I am curious though, about how many readers here think he should be tortured especially for being anti gay? Anecdotes show that such people are most likely gay themselves. Punishment for self hate? There os nothing like judgemental intolerance!

    Posted by: Ted | Feb 4, 2010 11:08:34 AM


  6. Note the way the statement says, "a master at defusing bombs," as if that means he should be cut some slack. Also it's not clear whether he was dropped all the way back to private or simply one rank down to sergeant from staff sergeant.

    Bottom line it will cost him some money and benefits for a while, but he keeps his career, and, given his specialty, he'll be bumped back up to staff sgt. before long. Far better treatment than he deserves.

    Posted by: Boxerdad | Feb 4, 2010 11:17:07 AM


  7. Wow they are finally doing the right thing, prosecuting anti-gay hate crimes and exhibiting low tolerance for such crimes. I think I may come to like this new attitude. Lets hope it spreads to police departments like Miami's.

    Posted by: Jersey | Feb 4, 2010 12:35:34 PM


  8. Bottom line it will cost him some money and benefits for a while, but he keeps his career, and, given his specialty, he'll be bumped back up to staff sgt. before long. Far better treatment than he deserves.
    --------------
    While none of us know what rank he has, the truth of the matter is he will never be promoted again. Once your record is stained, your career is over in the services, ask anyone who serves.

    I for one am shocked that they went this far, in the past this would be swept under the rug.

    Posted by: patrick nyc | Feb 4, 2010 12:52:46 PM


  9. 'Once your record is stained, your career is over in the services...'

    Generally true for the officer corps, but not so for the lower enlisted ranks. He'll get his stripes back.

    Posted by: Boxerdad | Feb 4, 2010 1:59:46 PM


  10. I served in the military. This guy will will lose about 2-3 months pay, go back down to airman. But yes, based on his skill will go up to staff Sgt. (E5 in Air Force) fast. At the end of his career he will get an honorable discharge. Sad.

    He should never have been given this Art. 15 option. The lame "we need bomb disposal people" argument does not hold water since the "we need translators" argument certainly isn't used for homosexuals.

    Posted by: Mary | Feb 4, 2010 2:16:41 PM


  11. He should have been stripped of his medals. The ego driven racist bigots would rather give up their stripes than give up their medals.

    Posted by: ChrisM | Feb 5, 2010 11:19:48 AM


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