Police in Portland, Ore., are investigating what they called a possible bias attack against two gay men.
Brad Forkner, 23, and Christopher Rosevear, 25, told investigators they were attacked by several suspects on Sunday night while walking hand-in-hand in Waterfront Park, reported KPTV-TV.
As the pair walked, police say, they noticed several men behind them who were talking, laughing and pointing, but they weren’t sure if it was directed at them.
Police say the attack happened as Forkner and Rosevear walked from the bridge to the trail toward the East Bank Esplanade.
The pair told officers the men pushed and punched Forkner before he managed to break away and call 911.
Police say the attackers hit Rosevear in the head, face, back and ribs before running off.
Forkner said he is most disturbed by the fact that bystanders on the bridge failed to respond to the attack, which took place while it was still light out.
Portland Mayor Sam Adams, who is openly gay, issued a statement Tuesday and said, “Any two people in Portland should be able to take a walk, hand in hand, without fearing for their safety.”