The NYPD's Hate Crime Task Force is looking for suspects who attacked and beat two Ecuadorian brothers in Brooklyn, as one brother was declared brain dead. He remains in life support as relatives wait for his parents to arrive.
Jose Osvaldo Sucuzhanay, 31, and his brother Romel were drunk during the early hours of Saturday morning and were "staggering around... Kossuth Place and Bushwick Avenue." The NY Times writes, "They may have been a bit tipsy as they walked home in the dead of night, arm-in-arm, leaning close to each other, a common tableau of men in Latino cultures, but one easily misinterpreted by the biased mind."
The attackers, who got out of an SUV, used an aluminum bat and a broken bottle in their assault and allegedly yelled antigay epithets at them, like, "Check out those f----ts over there" (as well as "F--- you, Spanish people", and beat Sucuzhanay's skull in. The Daily News says Romel Sucuzhanay managed to escape, "His bloodied brother returned to the chaos, clutching his cell phone, telling the attackers that he had just phoned 911. The attack pack then sped off."
The incident is being investigated as a hate crime. Lawmakers were shocked, with City Council Speaker Christine Quinn saying, "This won’t be tolerated. We cannot and we will not let hate go unchecked in our city.” Jose Sucuzhanay had owned a real estate agency in Bushwick for ten years; one of his employees said, "He is a peaceful person. He wouldn't hurt a fly. We don't know why it happened." Related: The Guardian Angels are now patrolling Patchogue, where an Ecuadorian immigrant there was killed, allegedly in a hate crime attack from a bunch of teenagers.