Police arrested a 20-year-old man Saturday morning and charged him with a hate crime after he allegedly beat a woman he believed was gay in gay-friendly Provincetown, Massachusetts, the Cape Cod Times reported.

Police say Eric L. Patten was drunk when he came upon two women outside the Post Office Cafe & Cabaret shorty after 1AM. Patten yelled anti-gay slurs as he approached the pair. He grabbed one of the women and smashed her into the sliding window of the cafe, shattering it and injuring the woman, police say.

A large crowd quickly gathered and someone flagged down a passing police cruiser.

When officers arrived on the scene, Patten was “punching a woman on the ground beneath the window of the Post Office Cafe,” Provincetown police Sergeant Carrie Lopes said.

The officers pried away Patten, who fought them, kicking one and spitting at the other.

“Patten was screaming biased anti-gay language,” Lopes said. “We took him into custody as quickly as possible, so he would not incite the large crowd that was gathering.”

Police say witnesses to the hate crime were visibly disturbed.

“There were all these women crying,” Lopes said. “They were just very agitated and visibly upset, not just by what they saw but by what they heard.”

“That's the thing with a hate crime, it's not just the victim who is hurt, the whole community is affected.”

Provincetown is considered to be the gay mecca of New England. Massachusetts lawmakers adopted hate crime legislation that protects gay and lesbian victims of violent crimes. A bill that would add transgender protections is currently being debated in the Legislature.

Patten was taken into custody and charged with assault with a dangerous weapon (a window), assault and battery under hate crime statute, wanton destruction of property of more than $250, disorderly conduct, assault and battery on a police officer, and resisting arrest. Patten is scheduled to face a judge during an arraignment hearing Tuesday in an Orleans District courtroom.

The victim and her friend were reportedly treated for minor injuries at Cape Cod Hospital.