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Russian police confirm man was tortured to death because he was gay

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Update, Monday, May 13:
Police have confirmed the identity of the victim as Vladislav Tornovoy, 23.


VOLGOGRAD, Russia — Two men have been arrested for torturing a 23-year-old man to death in Russia in an apparent homophobic attack, investigators said Sunday.

Police Inspector Andrei Gapchenko told radio Ekho Moskvy that the body of the victim was found in the courtyard of an apartment complex on Friday morning; the victim suffered multiple stab wounds, and severe injuries to his genitals.

Vladislav Tornovoy

According to Gapchenko, a 22-year-old acquaintance of the victim and a 27-year-old ex-convict have been arrested and detained after telling police they had been drinking with the victim and attacked him after he admitted to them he was gay.

The two men then allegedly beat him, sodomized him with a beer bottle, and smashed in his skull with a stone. They have been charged with murder.

Prominent LGBT equality rights activist Nikolai Alexeyev told LGBTQ Nation that it is unheard of in most of these types of crimes for Russian police officials to specify that homophobia was the motive in an attack, adding that most attacks against Russian LGBTQ individuals are normally not described as such by police agencies.

Alexeyev noted that with the increasingly harsh treatment of LGBT persons in the Russian Federation, spurred on by passage of “anti-homosexual propaganda” laws, including recent efforts to pass a national measure given preliminary approval by Russia’s Parliament, has activists concerned that similar incidents will increase, encouraged by the laws as Russians would be “less likely to fear consequences for attacking gays.”

“This monstrous incident in Volgograd demonstrates the fruits of the homophobic policy that is being conducted in this country, including the initiative to ban homosexual propaganda,” Alexeyev said.

The government of Russian president Vladimir Putin has given the national law, expected to win final parliamentary approval within weeks, its tacit approval. The United Russia party, which dominates the Russian Duma has publicly stated its intent to add an amendment to the measure that would fine any persons who voice support for the Russian LGBTQ community.

Putin warned last month that agreements with other countries on the matter of adoption of Russian children may be changed to ban such adoptions if those countries legalize same-sex marriage.

The political climate regarding treatment of the LGBTQ community has become dire according to Alexeyev, as illustrated by the case of another leading Russian LGBT rights activists, Aleksei Kiselyov.

Kiselyov fled Russia to avoid prosecution by the Putin government for his protest activities and was granted political asylum by Spain in April.

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42 more reader comments:

  1. Russia has republicans?

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 4:57pm
  2. :´(

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 5:01pm
  3. Terrible…..Too bad there aren’t any gulags still in operation.

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 5:07pm
  4. “Why do people feel the need to care about other people’s sexuality?” Religion. That’s why.

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 5:12pm
  5. Homophobia even more than religion, methinks!

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 5:21pm
  6. The Russian government is complicit in this atrocity. Can they imagine that their homophobic rantings and policies don’t encourage these kinds of bashings?

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 5:26pm
  7. I find it odd they hate gays, but when they torture them they usually sodomize these people ummmm. I think the two guys who did this are a little gay that are mad cause they have to hide in the closet. Well hopefully they will get their just desserts in prison when they because someone’s bitch. Expect being sodomized with a broken bottle is what they deserve.

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 5:42pm
  8. Horrible.

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 6:41pm
  9. sad and sick…..that kind of thing needs to END….gay people are also CHILDREN OF GOD…..when are ALL people, going to get that through their HEADS?

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 6:57pm
  10. not good at all

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 7:00pm
  11. Well I only hope that the law takes stand show’s that we are people too sad by this praying for the family of lots son or brother or partner that is now a angel in heaven !!!

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 7:39pm
  12. I will never go to Russia @@#$D@!

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 9:22pm
  13. wow this is soooo sad that some people are sooo narrowminded to do something like this to a human being because of theyre sexuality….. I SUPPORT EQUALITY 100 % need to put an end to this kind of discrimination!

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 9:33pm
  14. :-(

    Posted on Sunday, May 12, 2013 at 10:03pm
  15. :hahahaha:

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 1:51am
  16. and gay bashing in NYC, it is still with us people

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:29am
  17. And what are they going to do about it ??? NOTHING ! When will the world wake up and see what this Vicious country is doing to its Gay & Lesbian citizens and demand change against these all to often horrendous Human Rights abuses! ;o(

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:31am
  18. According to most studies, racist teachers do more harm to the psychology of teenagers than even racist parents.

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 8:33am
  19. :(

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:37pm
  20. There’s still work to do…

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:39pm
  21. So sad and horrifying, but at least there have been arrests made.

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:39pm
  22. this is ridiculous

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:39pm
  23. homophobia and heinous acts of cruelty and barbarism follow each other all across the globe. it is no coincidence. homophobes represent the worst of humanity

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:41pm
  24. So much to do….this is sad. Putin should be ashamed.

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:44pm
  25. ugh yet another place we can’t go without fearing for our lives..

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:44pm
  26. Sad. Disgusting!!

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:49pm
  27. this may well be a Mathew Shepard moment for Russia….as long as enough people realize that it is discrimination that lead to his murder.

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:52pm
  28. Why would anyone want to do this its terrible

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:53pm
  29. Russia should hang their heads in shame

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:56pm
  30. I just hope that Russian police treat this which what it’s called hate crime and punish the ass hole done this I pray for the family of there loved one that was stolen by haters !!!

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 4:59pm
  31. It’s pretty bad in Brazil too.

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 5:18pm
  32. What the hell is wrong with people??

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 5:33pm
  33. My condolences. ÷/ My heart goes out to the family that lost him, & the family that will miss him. </3 R.I.P. <3

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 5:49pm
  34. I guess I wasn’t aware of how low things have sunk in Russia for gay people. This is so alarming. My heart breaks for this young man and his family.

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 5:58pm
  35. Well, the torturers are just doing Vladimir Putin’s work for him, right?

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 6:14pm
  36. Obviously there are lots of gay men there, I mean he was sodomed wasn’t he?

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 6:24pm
  37. sickening

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 6:24pm
  38. Guess we don’t have a monopoly on the homophobic crazies. Rest in peace, brother. Jesus has welcomed you to heaven.

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 6:30pm
  39. OH MY GOD !!!

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 7:40pm
  40. How horrible! Poor guy. I hope justice prevails and the men who did this are incarcerated for the rest of their lives.

    Posted on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 9:00pm
  41. R.I.P poor guy

    Posted on Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 12:18am
  42. Some things still happens in uk too given the March 2009 claims by Northumbria Police of “breach of the Peace” being a political measure to stop protest made outside the Laing Art gallery by the office of Constable, support made by the office of Constable for the Political arrest of civil rights campaigner Peter Tatchell when he arrested Robert Mugabe in London 1999 for the Zimbabwe genocide and the Met Police took Mugabe to Harrods, support stated for Robert Mugabe by the office of Constable, and support for the genocide. Given that Mugabe described gays as “worse than pigs and dogs”. Is there any thing to be discussed on the apparent disconnect between what the “office of Constable” says on the streets and what the “office of Constable” writes in press releases despite in law the office of Constable being a single person for each police area (Gestalt) thus in law there should be no disconnect.

    Posted on Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 5:02am