Tom Daley
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15-Year-Old Florida Teen Arrested Over Antigay Attack on Another Boy

Officer arresting someone

A teenager from Orange City, Fla., was arrested this month after he allegedly punched another teenager repeatedly for being gay.

The 15-year-old attacked the other boy at an adolescent treatment facility in Daytona Beach, according to local TV station WESH. Though only 15, the alleged attack will be charged with felony battery charges involved in the attack, which authorities told the station was “motivated by prejudice against gay people.”

Police said that surveillance footage shows the teen speaking to the victim, 16, before walking over to him and beginning his assault.

The 15-year-old then climbs onto the victim while still attacking him until staff at the facility are able to pull him off.

The victim told police the teen had been calling him a homophobic slur and then said the victim was “snitching” on him before he started his assault. The victim’s father took him to the hospital for treatment.

WESH reports that the victim’s eye was partially swollen shut and he had cuts to his face.

Authorities have classified the attack as a hate crime. They told the station the teen is also being charged with violating probation from another arrest for battery.

The suspect is in juvenile detention.

Authorities in Orange City area have reported at least two other incidents of hate crimes in the past year, Metro Weekly reports. The others were related to race.

The antigay attack comes as a spotlight has been shone on Florida over the passing of the “don’t say gay” bill in the state. Now awaiting Gov. Ron DeSantis’ signature, the bill prohibits instruction about sexual orientation or gender identity in kindergarten through third grade and places a vague requirement of “age-appropriate” instruction in all grade levels.

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