Authorities in Northern Ireland arrested a 26-year-old man in connection to a suspected homophobic attack which saw two men brutally battered with a tyre iron in their home.
The Police Service of Northern Ireland, according to gcn, said that on Tuesday morning (August 4) two individuals broke into a property in Lurgan, in County Armagh.
“One man then left the property before returning with a second male, they then threatened two males and assaulted them with a tyre iron,” law enforcement said in a statement.
“The suspects then left in a black Audi car and made off towards the William Street area.”
If considered a homophobic, attack against two men would be the second hate crime in Northern Ireland in seven days.
The two victims, police said, suffered non-serious injuries. The property was roiled during the altercation, with a door and hallway damaged.
“One man was later arrested on suspicion of threats to kill and aggravated burglary with intent to commit grievous bodily harm,” the police continued.
“He remains in police custody at this time.
“At this stage, one line of enquiry is that this may be a homophobic hate crime. Enquiries are continuing.”
As detectives decide whether the incident can be considered a homophobic hate crime, Northern Ireland remains shaken. If considered homophobic, it would be the second hate crime in the last week.
Last Sunday (August 2), a same-sex couple were visiting Derry when, while on their way home from a night out with friends, they saw men lob abusive slurs at a group of women.
Liverpool-based couple Emmett Doherty and Luke Bromilow rushed over to the dust-up and attempted to diffuse the hostile situation. But the intervention ignited a vile torrent of homophobic slurs and physical violence against them.
Doherty’s list of injuries included a broken nose, and Bromilow was shaken for days, unable to leave the house.
“I’ve never witnessed anything like this before here,” Emmet told gcn.
“My partner loves it here, it was him pursuing the move here, more so than me. Now he is absolutely traumatised by it.
“He hasn’t slept, and we’re back and forth to the doctors and the hospital.”