Content Warning: Contains descriptions of violence and homophobia.
According to reports, a gay couple in Drogheda has been targeted in an alleged homophobic attack, which took place near Saint Dominic’s Park on the outskirts of the town in the late afternoon of Sunday, June 18.
The married couple said that they were returning home with their dog when they were attacked by a group of teens. They stated that the ordeal lasted for over a minute and involved them being kicked and having stones hurled at them.
They also reported that the gang threatened to kill them, r*pe their dog and used homophobic slurs against them. The couple reports that one of them suffered a broken nose, and they have both been left extremely traumatised by the event. One of the two victims managed to record the incident on his phone and later posted it on social media.
Speaking to local radio station LMFM, Ivan Miadini, one of the people targeted, explained: “I didn’t film with the intention of sharing it with the Garda. I think there is another way to go here.
“I am sharing this with various outlets with people I know to share it among themselves so we can find out who these people are and see what their situation is,” Miadini added. “I really want to know before taking this further down the line.”
Speaking of the attack, he described, “They started throwing punches and rocks, even bigger rocks. It all happened so fast, like in a minute. The vitriol, the things that they were saying became worse, even accusing us of being paedophiles.”
Gardaí say they are aware of the matter, but no formal complaint has been made to them yet. According to a report in the Mirror, a local Garda source described the attack as “shocking” and said he hopes the couple comes forward and makes an official complaint to ensure that the culprits are caught.
He continued, “These teenage gangs should not get away with this. There is no excuse for such vile homophobic and racist abuse.”
The couple called on Drogheda Council and local politicians to take measures to prevent this sort of attack from happening in future, suggesting that current policies fall short and strategies should include youth programmes and education schemes for Gardaí, teachers and any adult with a responsibility to inform young persons.
According to the report in the Mirror, Sinn Fein TD for Drogheda, Imelda Munster, says she has spoken to the victims and condemns the assault. “These are two law-abiding citizens going out for a walk with their dog when they are attacked in broad daylight because of who they are,” she said.
“It was a horrible experience for them and absolutely wrong. Who do these gang of thugs think they are? They must be tracked down and brought to justice for what they did.
“Under no circumstances should these thugs get away with this. It was a frightening incident and everyone in Drogheda is shocked and angry.”
If you have been affected by this story or are looking to reach out to someone for support or advice or just to talk, there are numerous services available for LGBTQ+ people and many offer instant messaging support. Some helpful services include:
Garda Confidential Line
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