Brazen homophobe who allegedly battered three people while screaming anti-gay slurs in queer bars charged with hate crime
A man has been arrested after allegedly screaming homophobic slurs and punching patrons at two LGBT+ bars in the same night.
According to police, the attacks took place the early hours of Thursday (August 6) in Madison, Wisconsin.
Police said that 27-year-old Billy Jack Kroneman of Marshall, Wisconsin was arrested for battery and disorderly conduct with a hate crime enhancer. He was also “tentatively” charged with resisting and/or obstructing and bail jumping.
At around 1.30am, Kroneman was escorted away from two bars on West Main street by victims – some gay – who he had screamed homophobic slurs at.
But not long afterwards, he returned to the same venues and began shouting slurs again. Police said he was “looking for a physical confrontation”.
Witnesses told authorities that when Kroneman returned to the LGBT+ bars he repeatedly punched a 34-year-old Madison man in the face, and also punched a 42-year-old woman.
A 41-year-old man who bravely tried to stop the attack suffered injuries to his knee, elbow and hand.
When police officers arrived at the scene, they heard Kroneman still yelling homophobic slurs at victims.
According to the American Values Atlas, more than a quarter of people living in Wisconsin, a largely rural state, believe that same-sex couples should not be allowed to get married.
One in five residents think LGBT+ people do not deserve non-discrimination protections, and almost a third think people should be allowed to refuse services to the LGBT+ community based on their religion.
However, Wisconsin senator Tammy Baldwin was the first out lesbian elected to Congress and to the Senate.
She is considered a popular choice to join Joe Biden as his running mate for the 2020 elections.
If she is selected as Biden’s running mate, Baldwin would be the first ever openly LGBT+ person on the presidential ticket.