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Russian Activist Murdered After Being Named on 'Gay-Hunting' Site

Yelena Grigoryeva
Yelena Grigoryeva

Yelena Grigoryeva, who died after being stabbed and strangled, had been listed on a site urging users to hunt down and attack LGBTQ activists.

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A Russian activist who was listed on a now-blocked website that urged users to hunt down and torture LGBTQ people has been murdered.

Yelena Grigoryeva was found dead near her home in St. Petersburg Friday night, friends wrote on social media, according to The Guardian. She had been stabbed several times and strangled.

She was an advocate for LGBTQ rights and other causes, including freedom for Ukrainian political prisoners. A friend and fellow activist, Dinar Idrisov, wrote on Facebook that she had received death threats and reported them to police, who took no action. Police contended that the threats weren't serious and that they were arose simply from conflicts with her acquaintances, Russian news sources report.

Police in St. Petersburg confirmed that they had found the body of a 41-year-old woman with several stab wounds but did not identify the victim, The Guardian reports. A Russian news website says police have arrested a suspect.

Grigoryeva's name had been listed on a website, inspired by the horror movie Saw, that published personal information about out and suspected LGBTQ people and encouraged attacks on them. Site administrators promised legal protection to users who hunted down the people named and did "anything but kill" them.

"A reminder: Yelena was listed on the homophobic 'Saw' website which has long threatened LGBT activists across the country," photojournalist Georgy Markov wrote on Facebook.

The site was active for a year but was recently taken offline by Russian regulators. However, activists warned that it could return, as previous blockings of the site hadn't been permanent.

Grigoryeva was among those who posted warnings, NBC News reports. "Law enforcement agencies have still not done anything to find the creators of this 'game' and bring them to justice," she wrote on Facebook.

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Trudy Ring

Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.
Trudy Ring is The Advocate’s senior politics editor and copy chief. She has been a reporter and editor for daily newspapers and LGBTQ+ weeklies/monthlies, trade magazines, and reference books. She is a political junkie who thinks even the wonkiest details are fascinating, and she always loves to see political candidates who are groundbreaking in some way. She enjoys writing about other topics as well, including religion (she’s interested in what people believe and why), literature, theater, and film. Trudy is a proud “old movie weirdo” and loves the Hollywood films of the 1930s and ’40s above all others. Other interests include classic rock music (Bruce Springsteen rules!) and history. Oh, and she was a Jeopardy! contestant back in 1998 and won two games. Not up there with Amy Schneider, but Trudy still takes pride in this achievement.