By Advocate.com Editors
Originally published on Advocate.com August 19 2002 11:00 PM ET
A 21-year-old man accused of beating three men who were leaving a Tampa, Fla., gay pride party in July has been charged with hate crimes, reports the Orlando Sentinel.
Devin Scott Angus of Clearwater faces three counts of aggravated battery evidencing prejudice and four counts of battery evidencing prejudice in connection with the July 7 attack, prosecutor Pam Bondi said. "The prejudice bumps [the felonies] up to first degree, so the
penalty on them doubles," she added.
The assault happened on the last day of Tampa and St. Petersburg's PrideFest, a six-day gay pride event. Sonny Gonzales, 34, and Stephen Hair, 25, had just left a party at the Florida Aquarium and were walking with a friend to their limousine when Angus yelled an antigay slur at them, police said. Angus then dropped his pants and screamed obscenities at the three before punching and kicking them.