Bristol police appeal for witnesses to homophobic attack

Avon and Somerset Police are investigating a homophobic hate crime in which a teenager was assaulted in Bristol city centre.

The 19-year-old victim was in Park Street, near to Tesco on College Green, when he was verbally abused by two men before one of them punched him in the face just before 4am on Sunday (May 7).

The victim was taken to Bristol Royal Infirmary where he was treated for injuries to his face.

Avon and Somerset Police are treating this as a hate crime because of the words used by the offenders before the attack was carried out and are reviewing CCTV footage from the scene close to OMG nightclub on Sunday (May 7) at 04.00am.

The offender who carried out the assault is white, of slim build, around 20 to 23 years old, with light brown hair in a quiff style which was short at the sides. He was wearing a baby blue long-sleeved shirt and black skinny jeans.

The man with him, who used homophobic language, is white, aged 23 to 25 years old, around 6ft, of muscular build, with dark brown hair also in a quiff style and short at the sides, with a short-cut well-groomed beard. He was wearing a dark long-sleeved shirt and black jeans.

Investigating officer PC Leanne Weeks said: “This was an extremely unpleasant and unprovoked assault on a man who was targeted because of his sexuality.

“It’s hard to understand how and why someone would do this and we’d urge people to come forward and help us if they can.

“We’re reviewing CCTV from around the area and will be making further enquiries with venues in the area to try to identify these two men.

“If you were out last Saturday night, or early hours of Sunday morning and recognise the description of these men, or if you saw this incident in the College Green area of Park Street just before 4am on Sunday, please come forward.”

Molly Scott Cato, MEP

Molly Scott Cato, MEP

Molly Scott Cato, MEP for Bristol, and the Green Party’s parliamentary candidate for Bristol West has condemned the shocking attack.

She said“I condemn this disgusting and unprovoked attack in the strongest terms; this is not the city most of us recognise. It is horrifying that such violent and shocking homophobia has visited our city. Bristol prides itself on being open, tolerant and inclusive and we must do everything we can to ensure it is a safe city where everyone is able to be themselves. There is no place for intolerance.”

“I hope the perpetrators are swiftly brought to justice and urge anyone with any information to contact the Police. There is no excuse for members of our communities living in fear because of their sexuality or gender orientation.”

If you have any information or can help the police with their enquiries, telephone 101 and give the call handler the reference number 5217101079.

For more information about how to identify and report a hate crime, click here:

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