Riders gathered near Echo Park Lake Saturday afternoon for a local edition of the World Naked Bike Ride. The event was meant to celebrate cycling and underscore the vulnerablity of bikers in a car culture. A video uploaded late Saturday afternoon makes the latter point handily.
The video shows fighting breaking out just before 5:00 p.m. between "naked" bike riders and the occupants of a car on Sunset Boulevard near Waterloo. Here’s the account that Johnny, who filmed the video, provided to the EastsiderLA:
"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."
Lt. Wes Buhrmester of Rampart Division added these details about the incident on the EastsiderLA site Sunday morning:
“The suspects were shouting at the riders, when one of them exited their car and punched one of cyclists, using anti-gay slurs. 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.”
Buhrmester confirmed for Echo Park Patch Sunday morning that the incident is indeed being investigated as a hate crime.
Burhmester provided this description of the suspects, again in the EastsiderLA comments section:
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 you have information about the incident call the Rampart Division detectices at (213) 484-3450.
Also if you have any pictures of the incident or the ride, please contact us.