And Peter LaBarbera couldn't be happier
December 28th, 2007
It appears that an horrible hate crime near Chicago a few days ago, and already one anti-gay extremist is positively dripping with glee as he takes a shot at twisting it to his advantage.
Felipe Rivera, 43, is charged with a hate crime as well as aggravated criminal sexual assault and other offenses, said a spokesman for the Cook County state’s attorney’s office. If convicted, he could face more than 30 years in prison, a source said.
… “Mr. Rivera got upset apparently because he believed the victim, No. 1, didn’t respond to a female and then, No. 2, somehow winked at him — made what he perceived as a sexual advance,” said Cicero police spokesman Dan Proft.
According to police, Rivera punched the unnamed victim in the face and was asked to leave the party. According to another report, Rivera offered to pay the victim $50 for sex, an offer that the victim refused. Rivera then waited outside for the victim to leave the party, and then followed him to the outer staircase of a basement apartment, where he raped him, punched the victim in the head rendering him semi-conscious, and then sodomized him with a metal broom handle.
Rivera then confessed the entire crime to the police, saying he did it “because he hates f – – – – – s, and this is what they get,” according to police spokesman Proft. Proft also said that Rivera claimed that the whole reason he did this is because the victim winked at him, which the victim denies.
Rivera then went to his mother’s home. His mother — his mother! — called the police on him because she has a protective order against him. Even his own mother won’t have anything to do with him. But Peter LaBarera sees Rivera as being unjustly accused of committing a hate crime — all because of a mere allegation that Rivera offered $50 for sex.
What LaBarbera doesn’t seem to understand however is that 1) we don’t know whether Rivera really made the offer, 2) we don’t know Rivera’s sexual orientation (was the offer real or a taunt?), and 2) Rivera’s orientation has no bearing on whether this is a hate crime or not. If a Black man who holds White supremacist views (and believe it or not, a very few of them exist) attacks an African-American solely because of his race, then it’s a hate crime.
But I guess one thing we can be sure of. We certainly know who LaBarbera sees as the victim in this case.
Update: LaBarbera’s evidence for Rivera’s supposed homosexuality evaporated, but he’s sticking to his story anyway.
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