The gay community in Benton Harbor –
a small Michigan town located near Kalamazoo – is rallying behind a
man after he was allegedly gay bashed, the South Bend Tribune
The man reported the incident to the
county's GLBT community center, OutCenter.
Police responded to an altercation
between two men at a gas station about 6AM on December 12. The man
said his assailant punched him in the face after asking, “What's
up?” The victim was treated at the scene for cuts and abrasions,
Benton Township Police Chief Vincent Fetke told the paper.
The assailant reportedly yelled
anti-gay slurs. Police say they are investigating the incident as a
A second attack reported to OutCenter
that occurred three weeks ago in nearby St. Joseph is stoking fears
of increasing anti-gay sentiment in the area.
Benton Harbor sits on the shores of
Lake Michigan, about 50 minutes by car from Kalamazoo. Kalamazoo
received national attention in November when voters decided not to
repeal a city ordinance that outlaws discrimination on the basis of
sexual orientation and gender identity.