Words: Steve Brown
A man was left with serious injuries after he was punched and stamped on during a homophobic attack at a petrol station.
The man, who is in his 40s, stopped at a Shell Garage, in Crosby Road North, in Liverpool, to buy alcohol in the early morning on January 30.
He was punched from behind by a random attacker and his hand was stamped on while the attacker reportedly hurled homophobic abuse at him while he was on the floor, the Liverpool Echo reported.
Onlookers reportedly ran to help him. The attacker is believed to have got into a private hire taxi, along with a woman.
The victim was left with serious injuries as he tried to walk back to a waiting taxi where he was taken home.
He later went to hospital to have his injured hand treated.
Detective Constable Jaclyn Rainford said: “This was a disgraceful, unprovoked attack on a man who had been out for a meal and was on the way home when he stopped at the petrol station.
"The verbal abuse of the victim also means we’re treating this as a hate crime.
“Were you in the petrol station or nearby when this happened? We want to speak to all of those members of the public who kindly came to the victim’s assistance but would also ask that anyone with dashcam can check and see if they captured the suspect getting into a taxi afterwards.
“Our enquiries to trace the taxi are ongoing but your information might be vital, so come forward and we will take positive action.
“There is no place in our society for hate crime and Merseyside Police is committed to maintaining the right of all our communities to be treated with fairness, dignity and respect.
“It is vital that we give our support to anyone who believes they have been subjected to abuse or left in fear because of who they are and I want to reassure the public that the force is committed to taking action against those responsible for hate crime and building trust with all of our communities.”