The mayor of a small town has been hospitalized after he was stripped, tied to a tree, and beaten by two people and then robbed at a cruising area in what appears to be an anti-gay hate crime.
The 67-year-old mayor of a small town in the south of France – whose name and town have not been made public – was found naked by police and is currently recovering from fractured bones in a hospital, while the suspects remain at large.
“The wounds testify to the nature of the attack,” said prosecutor Samuel Vuelta-Simon, adding that the victim has not been able to make an official statement to police due to his facial injuries.
Authorities say that the victim is the mayor of a town near Toulouse. On Saturday night, he was in Toulouse in a parking lot that is a known gay cruising area.
Two people approached him and held him down as they took off all his clothes and tied him to a tree. The alleged assailants then punched the victim repeatedly.
He was able to get the police’s attention after the attackers left. The police found him covered with wounds all over his body and he was taken to a hospital for treatment.
The aggressors took the victim’s clothes and his car. The national police later found the car, but without the two suspects. The departmental police are still searching for them, even though they have not been able to identify them.
The prosecutor’s office is not yet willing to declare this an anti-gay hate crime.