Arrest Made in Cleveland Bar Attack; Ohio Hate-Crimes Law Does Not Apply
BY Trudy Ring
September 20 2013 7:53 PM ET
Cleveland police have arrested a 16-year-old in connection with a Labor Day weekend attack at a gay bar, but he will likely not face a hate-crime charge because Ohio law does not cover crimes based on sexual orientation.
The youth, whose name was not released because he is under 18, was charged this week with suspected robbery in connection with the September 1 assault on Jared Fox, 28, Cleveland’s Plain Dealer reports. Fox was walking into Cocktails, a gay club, when a group of young people beat him and stole his wallet and cell phone.
Ohio’s hate-crimes law allows enhanced charges only on crimes committed because of the victim’s race, color, religion, or national origin. However, judges are able to consider other factors, including whether the crime was motivated by the victim’s sexual orientation, in sentencing, a prosecutor told the Plain Dealer.
A Cleveland city ordinance allows for hate-crime enhancement on crimes based on sexual orientation, but it applies only to misdemeanors, and the charge against the youth is a felony.
Police recently arrested a 13-year-old in connection with another incident at Cocktails. On the evening of September 6, several young boys threw rocks onto the bar’s back patio, using antigay slurs while doing so. The 13-year-old was arrested the same night.
Bar manager James Foster told the Plain Dealer he hopes police will soon arrest others involved in both attacks.
- Op-ed: The Lasting Impact of Out TV Teens on LGBT Youth
- Artist Spotlight: Hernan Marina
- WATCH: Out Rapper Le1f on Letterman
- WATCH: Rachel Maddow Blasts Critics of Obama's Funny or Die Interview
- Boston: Major Beer Sponsor Pulls Out of St. Pat's Parade
- Fox's Newest Cop Comedy Is Quietly Breaking Ground
- Religion Billy Graham's Son: Obama Could Learn from Putin's Homophobia 26 min 9 sec ago
- Television WATCH: Out Rapper Le1f on Letterman 2:59 PM
- People WATCH: The Strong Bond Between Straight Women and Gay Men 2:52 PM
- Transgender Trans Contestant is Miss Congeniality at Calif. Beauty Pageant 11:57 AM
- Theater Injury Sidelines Christopher Sieber in Matilda 5:00 AM
- Artist Spotlight Artist Spotlight: Hernan Marina 4:00 AM
- Hot Sheet Hot Sheet: A New Quiver March 14 2014 7:30 PM