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City of Cleveland Threatens Gay Bar Owner Targeted by Hate Crimes for Calling Police Too Often

Fox

Last week we reported on a gay man beaten by a group of youths outside the Cocktails Lounge gay bar in Cleveland. Jared Fox was sliced by his glasses, his eardrum ruptured, and his face bloodied and bruised.

Surveillance_cocktailsThis week, a teen was arrested after the bar released surveillance video showing a large group of youths targeting the bar by throwing rocks, some the size of small canteloupes, over the fence at its patrons.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported that there have been at least six attacks since this spring.

Now, Towleroad has obtained a copy of a letter written by the City of Cleveland to the bar's owner Brian Lyons threatening him for calling the police 9 times.

Writes Director of Public Safety Martin Flask in the letter:

"Repeated calls to the same property place an undue and inappropriate burden on the taxpayers of the City of Cleveland and on our safety forces."

Flask orders Lyons to submit an action plan "outlining your strategy to eliminate the problems at this location" or risk action against him by the police.

Says the letter:

Re: Property located at 9208

Our records indicate from September 02, 2012 through September 01, 2013 Cleveland Police Officers and/or Dog warden have been dispatched and responded to your property located at 9208 Detroit Avenue inns for various Calls for service. Repeated calls to the same property place an and inappropriate burden on the taxpayers of the City of Cleveland and on our safety forces. The estimated cost for the city safety forces to respond to your property is approximately $100.00 per call for service.

l am confident that we share the same goal and that you will take the necessary steps to eliminate the repeated calls for police services to your property. Therefore, within 10 days of the date of this letter, you will be required to submit your action plan to the First District Neighborhood Police Commander (623-5105), outlining your strategy to eliminate the problems at this location.

Failure to address these issues, resulting in future calls for police service, will be scrutinized for appropriate administrative or law enforcement action.

Sincerely,

Martin L. Flask, Director Department of Public Safety

cc: Director of Law Michael McGrath, Chief, Division of Poke Councilperson lay Westbrook, Ward 16 Deputy Chief Field Operations, Division of Police 1. District Commander

Gangs of youths are beating up patrons of the bar as they come and go, and throwing melon-sized rocks over the fence at its patrons, and the city is putting the onus on the gay bar and its owners to clean up the crime itself or continue to be victimized.

I wonder how this treatment by the city will sit with the Gay Games committee, as they prepare to welcome more than 10,000 mostly LGBT participants from more than 65 countries to Cleveland next August?

Copy of the letter below:

Letter_cleveland

ADDENDUM:

In related news, the Cleveland Plain Dealer just published this editorial highlighting the spate of anti-gay hate crimes in Cleveland's neighborhoods, and calling for a public education campaign ahead of the Gay Games in 2014.

Writes the paper, in part:

Despite the U.S. Supreme Court's rulings and society's generally more welcoming attitudes to gay marriage, there's still a need to address deeply-rooted prejudices against gays and gay lifestyles.

It is time to elevate diversity and address the ignorance that has been making headlines the last couple of weeks in the two-block area around Cocktails, a bar on Detroit Ave. that caters to a gay as well as a neighborhood crowd...

...The police enforcement is welcome but it isn't the full answer. Education and community involvement are the other ingredients. Part of that will come as same-sex marriage advocates launch a statewide educational campaign and the months tick down to the 2014 Gay Games. One of the lessons of the games is the need to foster diversity. That message needs to be delivered as well to the young people who live near West 91st and West 93rd streets and Detroit Avenue.


13-Year-Old Arrested for Attack on Cleveland Gay Bar, Possibly its Patrons: VIDEO

Surveillance_cocktails

Last week we reported on a gay man beaten by a group of youth outside the Cocktails Lounge gay bar in Cleveland. Jared Fox was sliced by his glasses, his eardrum ruptured, and his face bloodied and bruised.

CocktailsNow, a 13-year-old boy is under arrest after the bar released surveillance video showing a large group of youths targeting the bar by throwing rocks, some the size of small canteloupes, over the fence at its patrons, FOX8 reports:

“I kicked open the gate and I ran out when I ran out all the kids scattered,” [bar patron Ric] Scardino said.
He said two kids came back and confronted him.

“The one with the white shirt had a broom in his hand and he told me what he was gonna do with; he was gonna beat me with the broom and what he was gonna do to me with the broom afterwards,” he said.
That’s when Scardino pulled out his mace.

“They thought this was a gun. They saw the black and they said the (bleep)’s got a gun and they took off running,” he said.

Police are trying to determine if the 13-year-old was involved in both incidents. However, Scardino says there have been at least three other attacks.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "13-Year-Old Arrested for Attack on Cleveland Gay Bar, Possibly its Patrons: VIDEO" »


Cleveland Kidnapper Ariel Castro Kills Himself

Cleveland monster Ariel Castro committed suicide in his prison cell, NBC News reports:

CastroKidnapper and rapist Ariel Castro was found hanged in his jail cell just a month after being sentenced to life in prison plus 1,000 years for holding three women captive in his Cleveland home, a prison official said early Wednesday.

Medical officials tried to revive the 53-year-old former school bus driver after he was discovered around 9:20 p.m. Tuesday at the Correctional Reception Center in Orient, Ohio, authorities said. Castro was transported to Ohio State University Medical Center but was pronounced dead at 10.52 p.m.


Gay Man Beaten by Mob in Hate Crime Outside Cleveland Bar: VIDEO

Fox

Jared Fox was attacked on Saturday night outside the Cocktails Lounge in the area of West 93rd Street and Detroit Avenue by a group of people he says taunted him with homophobic slurs and demanded money, ABC5 reports:

Cleveland police said they received four calls about a group of males disturbing the area and assaulting a customer at Cocktails Lounge.

“Last night I was the victim of a hate crime. I was walking into a bar on Detroit Avenue in Cleveland. I was walking from my parked car. I got out and I saw a group of youth on the side of the street,”  Jared Fox said in a YouTube video.

“Instincts and my experience with youth was that kids in a large group just aren’t up any good.”

“They started to just charge and they surrounded me,” Fox said. He said they asked for him money and used anti-gay slurs. “They thought I was an easy target.”

"They just started beating me," Fox said. "They punched my glasses into my face and sliced it right there" he said while pointing to the cut on his nose. He said he also suffered a ruptured eardrum. "They stomped on me, my back, my ribs while I was on the ground."

Fox says one of them asked him, "Do you want to die?" He says he begged someone driving by in a car for help but the car drove away. He also pounded on the doors of nearby houses.

Watch ABC5's report and Fox's YouTube video, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Man Beaten by Mob in Hate Crime Outside Cleveland Bar: VIDEO" »


Three Women Held for 10 Years by Cleveland Kidnapper Speak Out for First Time: VIDEO

Cleveland

Amanda Berry, Gina DeJesus, and Michelle Knight, the three women rescued last May from a kidnapper who had been holding them captive in a Cleveland, Ohio home for more than 10 years and subjecting them to horrific abuse, speak out for the first time in a video released last night. The clip was reportedly shot on July 2.

Says Knight in the video: "I may have been through hell and back, but I am strong enough to walk through hell with a smile on my face and with my head held high and with my feet firmly on the ground."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Ariel Castro, the monster who held these women has pleaded not guilty to a 329-count indictment including several kidnapping and rape and one count of aggravated murder, and is being held in lieu of $8 million bail.

Continue reading "Three Women Held for 10 Years by Cleveland Kidnapper Speak Out for First Time: VIDEO" »


Gay Man Beaten In Assault Outside Cleveland, Ohio: VIDEO

Screen Shot 2013-06-23 at 4.32.36 PM

A gay man from Norwalk and his friend were attacked and beaten earlier this week while visiting a 7-Eleven in Sandusky, Ohio about 60 miles outside Cleveland. Fox 8 reports

Screen Shot 2013-06-23 at 4.31.31 PM"The victim and his friend were inside the 7-Eleven initially and the two suspects walked in right after them," said Detective Gary Wichman with the Sandusky Police Department. "The two suspects had left the store prior to the two victims and it apparently happened right after that."

Police say Angel Kennedy, 23, and Neno Miller, 18, confronted the 22-year-old victim inside the 7-Eleven.

Surveillance cameras were rolling as the victim said he and his friend were taunted and called names.

"The victim described himself as flamboyant, and he felt that because of his sexual orientation, they were attacked because of that," added Detective Wichman.

While there is no surveillance video of the attack, the police report states the victim was repeatedly punched in the face, even kicked in the ribs. The two suspects took wallets from the victims and fled the scene before being arrested by police later that day. However, whether or not the two suspects will be charged with a hate crime is still in question.

"Right now, under Ohio Revised Code, it doesn't recognize what happened as a hate crime. We had looked into it and according to the prosecutor, it doesn't fall under a hate crime," said Detective Wichman.

Ohio law allows judges to consider "hate" circumstances in sentencing if, "in committing the offense, the offender was motivated by prejudice based on race, ethnic background, gender, sexual orientation or religion." At the sentencing hearing, the judge has broad discretion to decide how much consideration, if any, will be given to "hate crime factors."

Check out a news report on the attack, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Gay Man Beaten In Assault Outside Cleveland, Ohio: VIDEO " »


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