London hate crime victim: I’m feel more inclined to be open about my sexuality now
The victim in a homophobic hate crime says he feels more likely to be open about his sexuality in public following the attack.
Timothy Rumney, 29, and his boyfriend were walking down Old Street, London, early on Sunday, when they heard a man referring to them as “batty men”, reports the Standard.
The retail buyer was asked by the perpetrator why he was holding hands with his boyfriend, and later the same man approached them and hit him in the face.
He told the Standard that he would not let the attack put him off from being open about his sexuality in London.
The assault was the first time Mr Rumney was the victim of a hate crime, and he was never bullied at school because of his sexuality.
“I am proud to be with my boyfriend. If anything it has driven me the other way. I do not feel that it has made me feel any different about being by myself or being around London” he said.
On reporting the crime to police, he said: “The area has a lot of CCTV. I reported the bus number and where he was standing. I did not feel under any sort of threat. There was no thought that I was really in danger. I did not expect it to happen.”
Speaking of why he stood up to the man, he said he wanted to be able to stand up for himself. He asked the man to apologise for using homophobic language, and told him to leave them alone.
He said the attack had made him feel that more victims of similar crimes should report them to police.
Police are looking for a slim black man in his late 20s. About 5’8″ tall with stubble, he was wearing a dark waistcoat and a trilby hat, and was with a white woman with brown hair, described as early 20s. She was wearing a blue and white striped dress.
The attack took place at the Old Street junction with Kingsland Road at 3am on Saturday 16 August.
Anyone with information should contact police on 101, or to remain anonymous, should contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.