Teen injured in anti-gay attack in Liverpool

As the mourning continues for Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado of Puerto Rico and Jason Mattison Jr. of Baltimore — and as we wait to see what happens following an attack on Houston 16-year-old Jayron MartinPinkNews in the United Kingdom has published a report about a 19-year-old gay man who was beaten by eight young men in Liverpool because they didn’t like his flamboyant style of dress.

The young man, who was not identified by name, suffered a broken nose and will have surgery next week to repair the injuries inflicted in the attack. He told Pink News:  “I was bombarded with punches, I didn’t know where they were coming from. They were shouting, ‘what the f**k are you wearing?!’ I can’t even get on the train without suffering abuse. It’s everywhere I go. I wear colourful stuff, and lipstick, but if I didn’t it would be restricting how I want to be.”

He also said he had been attacked before, and that his ex-boyfriend needed extensive surgery after being assaulted 18 months ago.

Gay trainee policeman James Parkes was hospitalized with a fractured skull after being set upon and beaten by a gang of young men in Liverpool in October, and in August 2008, gay 18-year-old Michael Causner died after being beaten by two other teens, also in Liverpool.

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Candlelight vigil Sunday

Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado, left, and Jason Mattison Jr.
Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado, left, and Jason Mattison Jr.

Local activists are organizing a candlelight vigil to begin at 6:15 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 22, at the intersection of Cedar Springs Road and Throckmorton Street. The vigil is being held in memory of Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado, a gay teen murdered last week in Puerto Rico, and Jason Mattison Jr., a gay teen murdered last week in Baltimore. The Dallas Chapter of the Gay, Lesbian, Straight Education Network is participating.

Everyone is asked to bring a candle and gather to not only honor the murdered children, but to speak out against the violence that claimed their lives.

Bob McCranie, one of the organizers, expressed outrage that the murders have not gained more national media attention.

“This should at least be in the top five news stories, and none of the mainstream media are paying any attention,” McCranie said of Mercado’s murder, before learning of Mattison’s death. “A teenager has been burnt and butchered in the streets, and all we can talk about is how many lies are in Sarah Palin’s book, and why Obama bowed to the Japanese prime minister. It is outrageous and unacceptable.”

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Another gay teen murdered

Jason Mattison Jr. (from Baltimore Sun)
Jason Mattison Jr. (from Baltimore Sun)

As LGBT advocates here in Dallas and around the country are planning candlelight vigils in memory of Jorge Steven Lopez Mercado — the 19-year-old boy who was raped, stabbed, burned and dismembered last week in Puerto Rico — word comes out of Baltimore about another murdered gay teen.

Jason Mattison Jr. was 15, an openly gay sophomore at the Vivian T. Thomas Medical Arts Academy in Baltimore. He was found dead last week at his aunt’s house. He had been raped, gagged with a pillowcase and stabbed repeatedly in the head and throat. Then his body was shoved into an upstairs closet at the house.

Police have arrested 35-year-old Dante Parrish and charged him with first degree murder. A cousin of Mattison’s has described the suspect, already convicted once of murdering someone else, as a longtime friend of the family, but she would not say whether Parrish lived at the house where Mattison died or if he was just visiting.

Read the full story here.

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