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Transgender Activist Beaten Following Benefit For Orlando Victims

"This is what transphobia looks like."

Seattle police and the FBI are searching for the perpetrator who assaulted a transgender activist after a benefit concert for victims of the mass shooting in Orlando, Florida. 

The attacker allegedly said "Happy Pride" before uttering offensive language as he punched and strangled the victim, who lost consciousness, on Wednesday night in the Capitol Hill neighborhood.

A GoFundMe account identified the victim as Michael Volz and included photos showing cuts and bruises on Volz's swollen face in an emergency room. Volz was released from the hospital on Thursday.

Volz wanted the pictures shown "because this is what transphobia looks like," the GoFundMe page said. 

Michael Volz, a transgender activist, was choked and punched in Seattle after attending a benefit for the victims of the Orla
Michael Volz, a transgender activist, was choked and punched in Seattle after attending a benefit for the victims of the Orlando shooting.

Volz is a social worker and former county government employee who helped create the Kings County Transgender Resource Guide, according to The Seattle Times. 

Volz was walking alone around 11:30 p.m. when the attack happened. The suspect is a white man in his 20s, with brown hair and a partial beard, according to the Seattle Police Department. He wore an orange or copper-colored sweatshirt, blue jeans and sandals, police said. 

“I’m disgusted by this hateful attack,” said Seattle Police Chief Kathleen O’Toole. “I want to assure the victim and the community that the SPD will leverage every resource to identify the suspect and bring him to justice.”

Seattle's Trans Pride Parade begins Friday evening as part of a weekend of LGBTQ events. Police will maintain an increased presence downtown and in the Capitol Hill neighborhood.

HuffPost

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