Portland man arrested after ‘punching trans woman in unprovoked LGBT hate crime’
A Portland man was arrested on Wednesday night after allegedly attacking a trans woman on the street in an LGBT hate crime.
Timothy Emmett Walsh, 38, is suspected of punching a passing trans woman in the face several times in an unprovoked incident.
According to the Portland Police bureau, he made an initial comment about “a man in woman’s clothing” and a “second comment about the victim’s sexual orientation” before leaping off his bike and attacking her.
The woman did not require medical treatment at the scene, while Walsh was arrested at around 8pm and charged with Assault in the Fourth Degree and Intimidation in the Second Degree, which is considered a hate crime offence under state law.
Portland police also said that Walsh was being held in the Multnomah County Jail for a parole violation.
Nancy Haque, executive director at Basic Rights Oregon, a non profit LGBT advocacy group, told LGBT website Them that the incident was representative of an “atmosphere of hate.”
She said: “There is an uptick in anti-LGBTQ+ violence and hate crimes, and there’s an atmosphere of hate being emboldened in this moment.
“It leads to people feeling like they can attack people based on who they are, who they love, or the colour of their skin.”
She added that there was a connection between the rights of LGBT+ people being curtailed and increased violence.
The incident comes on the heel of an expletive-laden verbal attack on a lesbian couple in the city, which was filmed and uploaded to Facebook.
Trudy and Wendy Dragoon had been going door-to-door around the city trying to find the owner of a dog they had found when the confrontation happened on July 17.
An unnamed young man can be seen squaring up to Trudy in the vile homophobic incident, in an apparent attempt to instigate a fight.
“You look like a f***ing man, let’s go,” he says. “Act like a f***ing man, get hit like one, c**t. Gay pride ass b**ch.”
He continued his tirade in the nearly three-minute long video, adding: “Come on, come on, you’re a f***ing woman. I’d f***ing knock you on your fat ass, you fat cow.”
Speaking to KOIN, a local TV station, Trudy’s wife Wendy said that a police officer who arrived on the scene did not intervene, telling the couple: “Not until he actually physically assaults you, there’s nothing that can be done.”
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Chris Burley, a public information officer at Portland Police, told the TV station: “I am not able to speak about the event, as this is an open investigation, I was not present at the time of the incident and a video does not necessarily convey everything that was occurring at the time of this incident.
“I will provide the officer that responded to the incident with this video so he may document the video and the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office may review for consideration.”
The video was viewed 56,000 times before it was allegedly taken down without notice by Facebook because of the content and language in the video.
Trudy and Wendy have since re-uploaded the footage, saying: “This needs to be seen and shared. People like this need exposure.”