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Anti-gay hate crime suspect appears in court

SAN MATEO, Calif. -- A 36-year-old man accused of savagely beating a gay man with a large bicycle U-lock because of his sexual orientation appeared in court Friday on three felony charges.

Santos Manuel Marquez is charged with assault with a deadly weapon, assault by means of force causing great bodily injury and battery causing serious bodily injury. Prosecutors also allege Marquez committed a hate crime.

Hate crime charges are rare in San Mateo County and aren’t always filed in assaults because there is a higher standard of proof. However, Chief Deputy District Attorney Karen Guidotti said there is no other apparent motive for the early Saturday morning beating.

“That is the subject of why the defendant didn’t want to be seen with the victim. He didn’t want people to think he was gay,” Guidotti said.

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