Catholic school implicated in brutal Philly gay bashing incident

Staff and former students from Archbishop Wood High School in Philadelphia are suspects in a brutal hate crime that occurred last week.

Reports indicate that an assistant coach, along with several other former students from Archbishop Wood High School, ambushed a gay couple last week while they were walking, and violently beat them.

Investigators say the victims, a 28-year-old man and a 27-year-old man, were approached by a group of “unknown males and females.” The group of 10-12 people approached and, according to police, “made disparaging remarks about their sexual orientation.”

That led to an attack, police say, with some of the suspects holding the victims while others punched them in the face, head and chest.

One of the victims was left with a broken eye socket and a wired jaw after three days in the hospital, while his partner had bruises and a black eye.

Many of the attackers were apparently graduates of the class of 2007 at Archbishop Wood High School, and had enjoyed a dinner out before assaulting the gay men.

The assistant coach allegedly involved in the assault, identified as Fran McGlinn, has been terminated. Kenneth Gavin, the spokesman for the local archdiocese, told Philly.com:

“He (McGlinn) was terminated this evening and will not be permitted to coach in any archdiocesan school. We expect all those who work with students in our school to model appropriate Christian behavior at all times.”

The archdiocese issued a statement Wednesday on behalf of the school denouncing the assault:

“Earlier today, Archbishop Wood High School became aware that some of its former students were allegedly involved in the assault of two men in Center City last week,” the statement read. “This afternoon, administrators communicated with the entire Archbishop Wood school community to make it emphatically clear that the school does not, under any circumstances, tolerate or condone the violent and hateful behavior displayed by those who took part in this senseless attack.”

Significant progress was made in the case after activists on social media used police reports and area surveillance footage to identify the suspects.

The Advocate reports no charges have been filed by law enforcement yet. When charges are brought against the assailants, the attack will not be prosecuted as a hate crime; Pennsylvania’s legislature failed to pass a hate crime law that included protections for LGBT people in 2002 and 2009.

The above photograph surfaced on Twitter and purports to show many of the suspects at a dinner party taken that evening at a nearby restaurant. (Image via lgbtqnation.com)
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