(JTA) — A young gay British couple were beaten by a gang who harassed one of them for being Jewish.
The Christmas Day incident occurred outside a pub in the municipality of Thornaby, in North Yorkshire, according to Gazette Live, a Yorkshire news website.
Jayson Homer, 20, and his 21-year-old partner, who did not want to be named, were attacked and moderately injured outside the Jolly Farmers pub.
“At first a girl in the group started taking the mick out of me for being Jewish. Then another lad from the group came over saying being Jewish was a race,” the 21-year-old said. “I was disagreeing with him and it was just a little debate really at first.”
But then the girl “started shouting ‘queer’ at me. Every time I went to the toilet someone said it while I was walking past,” he said.
Homer and his partner left the pub but were followed by the alleged attackers, who punched them and hit them with bottles. According to the victims, they were followed by a group of 15 people.
The Campaign Against Anti-Semitism, a British watchdog group, characterized the incident in a report posted Thursday as a case involving victims who were “brutally assaulted by a gang hurling anti-Semitic and homophobic abuse.”
Homer said the incident has left him “feeling suicidal” and that he has undergone checks for potential brain damage. His partner also requires further checks. Their friend, Marc Vasey, 21, was told that he has nerve damage to his cheek.
“I was bottled in the face,” Homer said. “I couldn’t really see what was happening because they had knocked my glasses off and my eye was filled with blood.”