(KRON) — A man has been arrested on suspicion of committing a hate crime against a pair of men in the Castro on Monday morning, according to the San Francisco Police Department. Just a day after the pair’s attack, the Human Rights Campaign declared a “State of Emergency” for LGBTQ+ Americans in the United States.
The incident started near 18th and Hartford streets just before noon. The two victims, a 40-year-old man and a 58-year-old man, said a suspect was following them on foot while “aggressively shouting anti-LGBTQ language,” police said. He then allegedly threw a glass object at the pair and the 40-year-old man suffered a non-life threatening injury.
Officers investigating the attack found probable cause to arrest 20-year-old Muhammed Abdullah, who they found in the area of Dolores Park. Abdullah allegedly fled from police on foot, and was detained near 18th and Church streets. He was later booked into San Francisco County jail on two counts of assault with a deadly weapon and two counts of committing a hate crime and resisting arrest.
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“These kinds of attacks are unacceptable,” Chief of Police William Scott said. “It’s especially troubling that this incident took place as we celebrate Pride month in San Francisco. Anyone who threatens or harms someone based on being a member of the LGBTQ community will be held accountable.”
Police say the investigation is still open. Anyone who has information about the attack is asked to reach out to SFPD’s Tip Line at 415-575-4444 or text a tip to TIP411. You can choose to stay anonymous.
The annual San Francisco Pride parade is scheduled to take place later this month. Parade officials this week spoke about plans to keep the event safe.
“We’re doubling down on security. We’re making sure that we are examining our safety plans. We’re working with the city,” Suzanne Ford, Executive Director of San Francisco Pride told KRON4. Ford says metal detectors will be placed at entrances of the Street Fair at the Civic Center and no large bags will be allowed.