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V 35 Issue 26

 
 
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New details emerge in recent Gay-bashing attacks on Capitol Hill
New details emerge in recent Gay-bashing attacks on Capitol Hill
Two charged in bias crime, three identified in Gay bashing

by Lisa Wardle - SGN Contributing Writer

Court documents reveal addition details in a June 20th hate crime that took place at Jack-in-the-Box, located at 100 Broadway Ave E. in Seattle. Brian Kenneth Bell, 21 years-old, and Benjamin Thomas-Winfred Davis, 22, have been charged with Malicious Harassment after three men were threatened with a knife because of their perceived sexual orientation. They are scheduled to be arraigned in King County Superior Court on Monday, July 2.

Davis has prior convictions for Violation of the Uniform Controlled Substance Act and driving while under the influence (DUI). Bell has no known prior criminal convictions. The King County Prosecutor's Office is requesting a bail of $25,000 for each defendant due to the "nature of this bias crime" and for the sake of "community safety."

The three victims, identified in court documents as Michael Volkman, Alberto Medrano and Troy Maravilla, pulled into the Jack-in-the-Box drive-thru behind a maroon Honda Accord with Washington State plates. Several people in the Honda began to make threatening hand gestures towards the victims. Medrano, the victim in the front passenger seat of the car, told the police that he was worried the suspects were going to escalate their behavior into a confrontation and told Maravilla, the driver, to lock the doors and keep his foot on the gas pedal in case they had to escape.

Without provocation, Bell and Davis exited the Honda from the passenger side and approached the victim's vehicle. The victims reported that the driver-side rear window, where Volkman was sitting, was malfunctioning and they were unable to secure it. Bell walked up to Volkman's window while Davis stood in front of the car, preventing them from leaving.

Madrano saw that Bell was attempting to conceal a partially opened knife along side his right leg. Later, he warned Volkman about the knife after hearing Bell say he had a blade.

Bell yelled out "Are you guys Queer?" and "Do you guys suck dick?" Fearing for their safety, Volkman and Madrano both answered Bell's questions together, "No." They said they were afraid that they would face bodily harm if they had answered, "Yes."

Bell quizzed the victims on their sexual preference once again, asking "Are you sure?" before he and his Davis returned to their Honda. Once inside the Honda, Bell made stabbing motions towards the victims with the fully extended knife. At this point, Maravilla backed his car out of the drive-thru and drove away. Volkman called the police.

Police responded quickly to the crime and stopped the suspect's vehicle on E. Louisa, just east of Eastlake Ave E. Sgt. S.F. Dietrich pulled over the suspect's Honda and detained the five individuals inside. A wood handled pocketknife was recovered in Davis' right front pants pocket by an officer at the scene. The knife had a four-inch blade. Court documents identified the other three occupants of the Honda as Lane Hillman (driver), Amanda Cats-Baril and Darek Caldwell, who was arrested at the scene on an outstanding warrant.

GAY BASHING
Almost three weeks ago, Jason Mancillas was brutally beaten a few blocks away while walking home with his boyfriend from a Capitol Hill Gay bar. His partner watched in horror as a group of as many as six men brutally punched and kicked him. Mancillas suffered lacerations and bruises to his face and body, a black eye and a wound to his head.

Mancillas said he was walking along the sidewalk with his boyfriend in arm. They had just left Neighbours Nightclub and were heading west on East Pike Street at about 2:00 a.m. when he overheard a stranger behind him state: "I'm sick of these fucking faggots!" He turned around and walked towards the man who made the comment just before the attack began.

"My back is still sore, basically everything is still sore, but I'm doing all right," Mancillas told the Seattle Gay News this week. The stitches to his scalp he received as a result of the Gay-bashing have now been removed from his head, he added.

Sources familiar with the police investigation into the bias crime have told the SGN that three suspects have been identified and questioned by police. Official statements from Mancillas and his boyfriend have also been taken.

"It's moving along, but it will probably be another month or two [before charges are filed]," said Mancillas about the investigation. "My understanding is that the prosecutor will call me and let me know what the deal is."

Due to the similar make and model of the suspect vehicles and time of the incidents, police had investigated a possible link between the two attacks, according to a source. However, Mancillas doubts there is a connection.

"The [Jack-in-the-Box incident] was pretty crazy, but I don't believe that there is any relation," he said. "There might have been, but ,,, I don't think so. It's hard to say, but it doesn't sound like the same type of thing."

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