LONG BEACH, Calif. — A former Marine accused in the beating of a man outside a Long Beach gay bar will be extradited from Illinois to face felony hate crime charges.
The Los Angeles County district attorney’s office says 21-year-old John Kelly O’Leary is charged with felony battery and assault. The criminal complaint alleges the Sept. 3 attack at the Silver Fox gay bar in Long Beach last year was a hate crime.
O’Leary was arrested Monday near Chicago. He faces eight years in prison if convicted.
Investigators said O’Leary went to the Silver Fox on Sept. 3, 2012 with three other Marines. At closing time O’Leary allegedly began shouting anti-gay slurs outside of the bar, and had a verbal exchange with one of the two alleged victims.
O’Leary allegedly punched the first victim as he continued to shout anti-gay slurs — the victim suffered a concussion and a fractured hip during the altercation, and he was knocked unconscious.
As the first victim was being attacked, a second person tried to help the first victim, but O’Leary began punching and choking him. At the same time, the three other Marines tried to break up the fight before police arrived, according to Jane Robison, a Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office spokeswoman.
Since the three other Marines were trying to break up the fight, they will not be charged, she said.
O’Leary is being held on $105,000 bail. He was dishonorably discharged from the Marines on Oct. 19, but a spokesman didn’t know the specific reason for O’Leary’s dismissal.