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PB Hate Crime Suspects Still on the Loose

Suspects are still on the loose after participating in an assault Saturday night, near Nick's at Nite in Pacific Beach. The victims say the assault should be classified as a hate crime.

One of the victims, who wishes not to be identified for fear of discrimination at work, told the story to SDGLN.com.

"Shane" was part of a group of friends that had gathered at Nick's to celebrate the life of a coworker who had recently passed away from cancer. Shane noted that he was the only gay person at the gathering.

As they were walking away from the bar at the end of the evening, they crossed paths with a large group of males that had just left a party on a nearby street.

Word were exchanged, but Shane and his friends quickly made it known that they weren't looking for a fight. This led to more aggression, taunting and derogatory language from the other group. Then came the slurs. "What, are you faggots?"

Shane remembers saying "Grow up," before being swarmed by the aggressors.

"Are you a faggot?" one of them asked.

Shane says he generally avoids such confrontations, but that night he spoke up and said "Yes, I am. So what?" He was immediately punched in the face and fell to the ground. He then called 911.

Another member of Shane's group was punched so hard, he fell back and hit his head on the curb. He was later taken to the hospital.

The attackers scattered when they realized the police had been called.

It was at this time that another member of the group "Craig", also celebrating at Nick's, came upon the aftermath and asked what was going on.

When asked if he was also part of the group, he affirmed the inquiry, and was also punched in the face.

The police arrived within minutes of the call. They found and arrested the man who assaulted Craig, identified as Bradford Dodge, a white male in his 20's, but the other attackers were nowhere to be found.

Both victims filed a police report, and plan to fight to the full extent of the law. The friend who was taken to the hospital did not file a report.

Even though Craig is not gay, he knows he was attacked because of his association with someone who had admitted to being gay; it is unknown at this time if his case will be handled as a hate crime.

Shane will not be able to press charges against his attacker until he is found or comes forward, but he wants to get the word out that hate crimes do happen in San Diego. "Keep your eyes open," he said, "and watch your back."

Channel 10 covered this story, watch it here: http://www.10news.com/video/21567242/index.html

If anyone has any details or leads in this case, don't hesitate to come forward - call the San Diego Police Department at (619) 531-2000, or (858) 484-3154 if you live in the 858 area code. The case number is 09057658.