3 Men Arrested In Anti-Gay Shooting In Brooklyn

Editor's note: This victim in this story has been described in reports as a "man dressed as a woman." As we are unsure if this is correct or if the victim identifies as transgender or genderqueer, we have refrained from using pronouns and will update if and when the gender identity of the victim is confirmed.

Two men and a teenage boy were arrested Sunday for what authorities say was an anti-gay attack culminating in the shooting of a victim described by reports as "a man dressed as a woman" in Brooklyn.

The 22-year-old victim was walking early Saturday morning with two friends on Broadway near Putnam Ave. in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn, the New York Daily News reports. The three suspects started shouting homophobic slurs at them, police said.

An argument ensued before the suspects began chasing the twosome down the street. Matthew Smith, 21, allegedly opened fire, striking one victim in the buttocks.

Shortly after the shooting, police officers chased down the suspects on foot, arresting all three. Smith was charged with first-degree assault and was also charged in a separate shooting that occurred Friday night, NBC New York reports.

The other two suspects -- Cody Sigue, 22, and a 17-year-old boy-- have been charged with menacing in the third degree as a hate crime.

The victim was taken to a nearby hospital and was treated and released.

“[It] shows how gay people can’t walk around in the street without someone saying something or doing something towards them," 24-year-old Daquan Ruddock, a gay resident of Brooklyn, told the Daily News. "It’s sad.”

Back in 2008, Jose Sucuzhanay, an Ecuadoran man, was beaten to death in Bushwick by two assailants who allegedly yelled homophobic and anti-immigrant slurs during the attack. One of the assailants was convicted of murder as a hate crime and was sentenced to 37 years to life in prison.

The number of anti-gay bias crimes in New York spiked last year. According to the New York City Police Department, there were 29 such attacks from January 2013 to May 2013, more than double the attacks during the same period in 2012.