A black fashion student says he attacked by a gang of Hasidic men who shouted anti-gay slurs at him while he was walking through Williamsburg after a night of partying.
Taj Patterson, 22 and a fashion major at New York City College of Technology, alleges he was headed home on Dec. 1, when more than a dozen Orthodox Jewish men started to assault him. During the assault, Taj says the were yelling, “Stay down, f—-t!”
“I’m walking down some block by myself and then the next thing I know, I’m surrounded by a group of Hasidic Jewish men and they’re attacking me,” Patterson said. “I was alone. I was an easy target. I’m black. I’m gay, a whole slew of reasons.”
His injuries include a broken eye socket, a torn retina, blood clotting, and cuts and bruises to his knee and ankles.
According to the police report, Patterson was “highly intoxicated, uncooperative and incoherent” after the attack, but he does recall the ring leader.
“There was a crowd around him, cheering him on and getting him rowdy, and he would grab me and push me against the wall,” Patterson said.
Evenlyn Keyes, a MTA bus driver, witnessed the attack.
“I get out of the bus and all these men were standing up straight around him,” says Keys. “Taj is laying down on his back. I went up to him and he was in so much pain. He says, ‘I can’t see . . . I can’t breathe.’ ”
The NYPD confirmed that the hate crimes unit is investigating the assault