Two men and one teen suspected in the
gang rape of a lesbian in the San Francisco area have pleaded not
guilty, reports the Associated Press.
The plea of a fourth suspect, a
15-year-old boy taken into custody on December 30 and held at a
juvenile detention center, was not released.
The four are accused of taunting a
twenty-eight year old lesbian, repeatedly raping her and leaving her
naked outside an abandoned apartment building in Richmond,
The woman was attacked on December 13
as she got out of her car, which bore a rainbow sicker, a symbol of
gay pride. The four alledgedly taunted the woman about being a
lesbian, then one struck her with a blunt object as she crossed the
street, instructed her to remove her clothing and raped her while the
other men held her down.
The men moved the victim to a
burned-out building, where they took turns raping her. Afterwards,
the assailants robbed
her of her wallet and car. The abandoned car was found by police two
A Saturday December 27 Richmond vigil
for the woman might have helped solve the crime. Police report that
tips from local residents led to the arrested.
Lawyers for Humberto Hernandez
Salvador, 31, Josue Gonzalez, 21, and 16-year-old teenager Darrell
Hodges entered pleas of not guilty to charges of kidnapping,
carjacking, gang rape and sodomy.
Salvador, who also pleaded not guilty
to a charge of committing a hate crime, and Hodges were taken into
custody by police on December 30, while Gonzalez turned himself in
the next day.
Hate crimes based on sexual orientation
continue to increase nationwide, totaling about 16% of all hate
related crimes, according to FBI statistics.