A New York teenager was beaten to death last week by homophobic party-crashers who shouted anti-gay slurs, witnesses said.

Anthony Collao, 18, who is understood to have been straight, was punched, kicked and beaten with a pipe. He died after two days on hospital life support.

Four teenagers – Alex Velez, 16, of the Bronx, and Nolis Ogando, Christopher Lozada and Luis Tabales, all 17 and from Queens, were arrested after Saturday night’s incident in Queens.

Witnesses told the New York Daily News that the party, in a disused warehouse, had been hosted by two gay men.

It was claimed that the suspects had stormed in shouting anti-gay abuse and refused to pay an entry fee.

Sources said that college graduate Mr Collao then left the party with a friend, fearing trouble.

But he was chased by the gang, pinned against a car and “beaten to within an inch of his life” with punches, kicks and a metal pipe, witnesses said.

One of the suspects, Christopher Lozada, was reportedly found wearing the victim’s baseball cap, while the others were covered in blood.

Mr Collao, whose family runs an ice cream business, died on Monday.