A New York man has been sentenced to 25 years in prison after a homophobic attack which left his victim in a coma and now needing a cane to walk.
Steven Pomie, 23, was found guilty of first degree assault on Dwan Prince, 28, who was beaten so badly that his whole left side is paralysed and he cannot remember the attack.
The former construction worker was attacked by a gang including Pomie last June, because he was wearing a pink t-shirt, the prosecution said.
Mr Prince said: “I was 27 years old, I was doing great, I had two jobs,” his mother, Valerie Prinez, then had to continue for him, “Pomie beat down my son, he attempted to kill my son.
“He took away my son’s memory, he took away my son’s brain … his limbs. But he can’t take away my son’s soul.”
Witnesses saw Pomie, an alleged Crips member, along with two others, attack the victim, and then deliver a blow to his head.
Pomie was given concurrent sentences of 25 years for assault and for assault as a hate crime. He started to sob and was handed a tissue by Mr Prince.
Pomie said: “I did not commit these crimes. The person who did it is on the street.
“What happened to Dwan was bad. I didn’t have nothing to do with it. I’m sorry.”
He plans to appeal the court’s decision. The other attackers are still being pursued.