It was not all fun and games during Saturday’s World Naked Bike Ride. Police launched a hate crime investigation after several cyclists were assaulted by motorists who beat the riders and yelled anti-gay slurs as the cyclists pedaled their way from Silver Lake into Echo Park on Saturday afternoon. At least two of the riders suffered minor injuries during what police describe as an unprovoked attack that was partially captured on the video shown above.
“The suspects were shouting at the riders, when one of them exited their car and punched one of cyclists, using anti-gay slurs,” said Lt.Wes Buhrmester in a comment to this post. “The punch was unprovoked and a blind-side, and knocked the cyclist to the ground. The second suspect exited and committed a similar act against a second victim, knocking him to the ground, then throwing his bicycle at him. More anti-gay slurs were shouted, and the suspects left.”
The YouTube video clip above shows a shirtless cyclist being thrown to the ground amid the sounds of honking horns and yelling on Sunset Boulevard near Waterloo Street. It’s not clear from the video what triggered the fight or how it ended. The video was shot and uploaded by a person who described himself as a Silver Lake resident named Johnny. He said he was recording the cyclists when the fight broke out at 4:56 p.m. Johnny provided an account of what happened:
While driving down Sunset, we came upon on a nude bike ride that looked like a protest of some sort. People were having fun it seemed, we took a video to document the fun things that happen in the neighborhood. Unfortunately, some guys behind us in traffic, got out of their car to beat up the riders. I don’t know what provoked them to do such a thing. All I heard them yelling was “faggot” at the riders. In the shaky video, its hard to see, but one of the guys picks up a bike and slams it into a rider. It happened so quick, but we got the license plate info.
The two riders who sustained injuries – one sustained a cut lip, the other suffered a bloody nose and scrapes to his face – declined emergency medical treatment, Buhrmester said. He provided the following description of two male suspects who were riding in a Honda:
The first suspect is described as a male, 20 years old, black hair, brown eyes, 5-8, 180 pounds, wearing a white t-shirt and blue jeans. The second suspect is a male, late 20s, black “buzz cut” hair, dark complexion, 5-10, 200-250 pounds, wearing a blue shirt with blue jeans. If anyone has information, you can either call or e-mail me at the addresses below (confidentiality will apply, other than me referring your information to detectives), or call Rampart Detective Division at (213) 484-3450. Refer to DR No. 11-0212143. There are some leads upon which detectives are acting.
* This post has been updated from the original version.