On the last Saturday of July 2016, a Polish gay man was gaybashed by a gang of 20 teenagers in the Phoenix Park
“I went to the Phoenix Park on my bicycle,” Marcin told GCN.. “I cycled for a while and then walked. When it got dark at about 9:30pm I was passing by the Ambassador’s house, and a group of teenagers started insulting me.”
“They shouted: ‘You fucking whore. How much? We’ll kill you, fucking fag’ – stuff like that.”
“There were about ten teenagers in hoodies on bicycles and I spotted that they were followed by a black Volkswagen Golf.
“But I ran off and hid beside the cricket club.”
The gang of teenagers followed Marcin.
“They didn’t know that I was there for sure, because they were looking for me. I heard someone in the Golf shout: ‘You need to kill as many, beat up as many fags as you can’. I was just terrified.”
“They were going around in circles in the carpark with the lights on and they spotted me. They said ‘Get him!’ I got on my bike, and then they were pushing me from the bicycle lane onto the street while the Golf was following me.”
“They pushed me so hard that I fell and hit my head. Then the car stopped and the doors were opened and I heard someone giving something [to the guys on bikes] – it sounded like metal pipes – and then they started hitting me and kicking me all over.
“I got smacked in my face by a metal pipe. There were kicks all over my head, my body. I have injured my hands.”
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Fighting For His Life
“Then I started running. I was fighting for my life at this moment because I knew it was serious if they started hitting me that much.”
Marcin struggled to get away, and found himself behind the Golf. He “heard someone say ‘Run him over! Run him over!’ and the car started reversing.
“I jumped over to the ditch on the other side of the road and yeah started running. They were still chasing me, and I started screaming for help.”
Click through to the next page to read more about this attack.
At this stage, a man got out of a van and approached Marcin.
“He came towards me, and they just backed off,” Marcin explains. “They took my bike because I left it on the middle of the road when I got hit. The guy asked me what’s going on, I told him ‘they attacked me they tried to kill me’.”
Marcin then called an ambulance and was immobilised in case of spinal injury. He was transported to Connolly hospital (Blanchardstown) where he was treated for his injuries.
“I found out that the Gardaí were there [at the hospital] but they never talked to me, which I thought was very weird because I thought they should take a statement.”
When he was leaving the hospital, Marcin spotted members of the Garda and asked them what he should do. They told him to contact the Cabra Garda station.
When Marcin called the Cabra Garda Station, they sent two Finglas based Gardaí to his house to take his statement. However, since the incident occurred in the Cabra precinct, it could take considerable time for them to transfer their report to the correct station.
“I went to Cabra myself on Tuesday or Wednesday and I gave a statement,” Marin said.
“It was weird because it seemed like nobody wanted a statement from me.”
Marcin insisted on a statement being taken, and his account of the attack was duly recorded.
The Garda subsequently called Marcin to tell him that finding the perpetrators of this homophobic attack could be very difficult explaining that there is no CCTV inside the Phoenix Park. This leaves Marcin with almost no recourse to find his attackers.
GCN reached out to the Gardaí for a statement on the issue: “I can confirm that Gardaí are investigating an alleged assault on a man in his 30’s on Chesterfield Avenue on the 30th July 2016 at 9.30pm,” a spokesperson for the Gardaí said, offering no further clarification.
Hate Crime Legislation
Ireland has yet to legislate against hate crime, which would provide special protection under the law to minorities such as the LGBT community who suffer attacks like this.
Mr Gay Limerick, Dr Christian Moretti, has spoken out, pushing for Ireland to introduce hate crime legislation. GLEN have advised that anyone who have suffered hate crime contact the Gardaí and report it on stophatecrime.ie.
If you’d like to see hate crime legislation brought in, you can take matters into your own hands by signing this petition, or bringing it up with your local TD.
In light of the attack he suffered, Marcin feels that the LGBT community should be warned about possible threats in the Phoenix Park area.
© 2016 GCN (Gay Community News). All rights reserved.