A gay man was struck between the shoulders with what may have been a crowbar Sunday in the latest of at least a dozen allegedly antigay attacks to plague Dallas’s Oak Lawn neighborhood.
John Wright at Towleroad reports that bartender Daniel Luhmann (pictured) was walking home at 1:30 a.m. from Cedar Springs Tap House, when he heard yelling that he initially presumed to be an argument, but now believes to be antigay slurs directed at him. As Luhmann walked away from the shouting, two men approached the bartender from behind and hit him with a metal pole between his shoulder blades. Luhmann says he fell to the ground, where the two assailants began kicking him.
The victim had his cellphone in his hand and pretended to be on a call, which he believes helped scare the attackers away, according to Dallas TV station WFAA. Luhmann reported the assault to police and met again with officers Wednesday, according to thestation. At this point, the assault has not been classified as a hate crime.
Dallas police have been inundated with reports of antigay assaults in the city’s prominent LGBT neighborhood known as Oak Lawn — with as many as 14 attacks reported since September, according to Wright.
After local activists picketed at the Dallas Police Headquarters last month, demanding more comprehensive follow-up on the reported attacks and better police protection to prevent them, officers increased patrols in the area. Dallas County District Attorney Susan Hawk on Monday hosted a town hall meeting with concerned residents, promising that if the robberies are found to be hate crimes, her team will “prosecute these cases to the fullest extent of the law,” reportsThe Dallas Morning News.
The attack on Luhmann is eerily similar to several other assaults that have taken place in Oak Lawn recently, including a robbery last month, which saw another gay male bartender from Cedar Springs Tap House beaten over the head with a heavy object, suffering a head fracture.