LGBT community meet to raise awareness about hate crimes - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

LGBT community meet to raise awareness about hate crimes

Meeting on Cleveland's west side, to raise awareness about hate crimes Meeting on Cleveland's west side, to raise awareness about hate crimes

Several members of the Cleveland community are coming together to try to put an end to hate crimes, this after police arrested a 13-year old boy.

Cops say the teen was among a group of teens caught on camera throwing rocks and shouting gay slurs at patrons several days ago, at Cocktails Bar.

The week before surveillance video captured a man being attacked by a group just outside the same bar, located at 92 and Detroit.

"If you can't shine a light on crime and you can't shine a light on hate then it's always going to be there," says Ric Scardino.

Brian Lyons owns Cocktails Bar. He along with other members of the community want to see more done to protect residents and businesses even though the city of Cleveland has beefed up patrols in the area since the attacks.

"It's not just a gay thing. it's everything. It's all about the community," says Brian Lyons, owner of Cocktails.

Ric Scardino says he wants Mayor Frank Jackson to get involved, to make sure everyone feels safe enough to walk down the street.

"The city needs to step up. The city needs to remember there is diversity," explained Ric Scardino.

The group says they will continue to hold meetings to come up with ways to bring attention to a problem they say they hope doesn't continue.

"It is locals that are being attacked, so let's do something," says Scardino.

Those who attended Thursday's meeting say they not only want the community to feel safe, but, they also want to make sure the thousands of visitors expected to come to Cleveland for the Gay Games in 2014 to be safe.

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