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District of Columbia

D.C. yoga instructor suffers broken jaw in possible hate crime attack

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

WASHINGTON — District of Columbia police on Monday acknowledged that a hate crime investigation is under way after a gay couple’s Saturday night out ended in a brutal beating.

One of the victims, 29-year-old Michael Hall Jr., suffered a broken jaw and fractured cheekbone in the attack, and had emergency surgery performed early Monday morning at the Howard University Hospital Center.

Michael Hall Jr.

Hall, a local yoga instructor, and his boyfriend Michael Roike were heading home from a restaurant just after midnight Sunday when they were ambushed by about five teenagers in the Eckington section of northeast D.C., reported WRC-TV.

Roike told WRC-TV that “four or five kids just came out of nowhere without any warning.”

“We didn’t think it was a robbery because they didn’t immediately ask for something. They just came out swinging and hitting,” Roike said.

A woman and her boyfriend went to their aid and managed to get the couple to safety.

Roike said he’s not sure if he and Hall were attacked because of their sexual orientation.

“I can’t think of another reason other than we got out of a fancy town car and we were walking in a not great part of town at a late hour,” Roike said. “We were probably holding hands. It could have been because we’re gay, but I don’t know for sure.”

Hall’s parents, Michael Sr., and Gail Hall of Colonial Beach, Va., located a few hours south of D.C., said that they worried for their son’s safety when he moved to the District nine years ago.

“It’s so unnecessary in this day and age, when everybody could just get along,” Gail Hall said.

The Metropolitan Police spokesperson told LGBTQ Nation that the investigation was active and that no suspects had been identified nor arrests made as of Monday evening.

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10 more reader comments:

  1. DC in’t usually that “anti-gay” these days…interesting.

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 6:55am
  2. all crime is hate crime but yes brutal is brutal

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 6:57am
  3. all crime is hate crime but yes brutal is brutal

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 6:57am
  4. Shameful.

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 6:57am
  5. This reminds me of this SVU episode. This woman who is part of a lesbian alliance is found gay and the rest of them are going all crazy on the cops screaming how it was “a hate crime”. Black people get killed daily, 90% it’s not racist. They just got killed. People tend to pull so much detail out of their ass. It’s like when your mom says “I need to talk to you”. You think about every little thing you’ve ever done wrong, when all she wants to know is where the remote is. Crime is crime and it’s always wrong, but just because someone gets beat up, it doesn’t mean they were beat up for being gay/black/hispanic/fat/redhead etc. 90% of the time it’s because people are just assholes.

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 7:10am
  6. STOP THE HATE!! GOD DOESN’T HATE, SO WHAT MAKES YOU THINK YOU’RE ABOVE HIM!!??

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 7:20am
  7. WHY?

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 7:43am
  8. Terrible! Hope he is ok very soon!

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 8:33am
  9. :(

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 10:49am
  10. My best regards for a speedy recovery and brighter days

    Posted on Tuesday, July 24, 2012 at 6:48pm