Friends of one of the victims of three separate incidents of anti-LGBT violence last week have scheduled a march for 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 20, outside the International House of Pancakes restaurant in Columbia Heights to show support for the three victims and others targeted for hate violence.
“This is a march to shows solidarity and support for all the victims of hate violence, whether they be lesbian, gay, bi, or transgender,” said Kyan Brady, a friend of a gay man who was beaten and robbed in one of the incidents.
Brady said it will begin 7 p.m. outside the IHOP restaurant where one of the victims, a 31-year-old gay man, was shot in the abdomen at about 6 a.m. Sunday, March 11 by an unidentified male suspect who called the victim anti-gay names. The restaurant is located at 14th and Irving streets, N.W. steps away from the Columbia Heights Metro station.
According to Brady and other organizers, the march will travel east on Irving St. to Georgia Ave., N.W., the site of the second incident, where a 29-year-old gay man – who is a friend of the organizers — was attacked and beaten by three unidentified male suspects about 9:30 p.m. Monday, March 12. Police say the suspects called the victim anti-gay names as they beat him.
Police say they found the victim three blocks north of where the attack began, at Georgia Ave. and Morton St., N.W. The victim reported he was robbed of his cell phone, iPad, and wallet at the Morton St. location, according to police. Police say they aren’t sure if the robbery was committed by the group of suspects who attacked the victim at the first location or by a different group of male suspects.
Both gay male victims remain in the hospital, with the shooting victim suffering from liver damage caused by the gunshot wound and the victim from the Georgia Ave. attack recovering from surgery needed to repair a broken jaw and additional head injuries.
The third victim, a transgender woman, was attacked and knocked unconscious at West Virginia Ave. and Mt. Olivet Rd., N.E. just before midnight on March 12, police said. The victim was treated and released from a hospital.
Unlike the first two incidents, which police listed as anti-gay hate crimes, police said they lacked sufficient evidence to classify the attack against the transgender woman as an ant-trans hate crime. However, a police report and Assistant Police Chief Peter Newsham said investigators are looking into the possibility that the attack was motivated by hate.
Organizers of the march, which is being promoted on Facebook, say it will travel from Georgia Ave. and Morton Streets back to 14th St., where it will head south to R St, N.W. From there it will turn right on R St. and travel to 17th Street and end at the gay bar Cobalt. Organizers say they will host a fundraiser at Cobalt for the gay male victim attacked at Georgia Ave. and Irving and Morton streets.