A recent crime in Springfield, Massachusetts left one man severely injured, according to CNN Boston.
Police say that a group of nine teens ranging from 12 to 19 came up to the victim - a 30-year-old openly gay man at approximately 3:00 a.m. and started harassing him. Officers say the victim was knocked to the ground, punched in the face and kicked in the head and the abdomen.
Reports further stated that during the incident female bystanders were encouraging the men to beat the victim up as they yelled crude remarks about his sexual orientation.
The suspects fled after the assault, and the victim was transported to a nearby hospital where he was treated for head trauma and released.
The victim's MP3 player was stolen during the fight and was later recovered from one of the suspects.
Those involved are being charged with a hate crime and possibly assault and robbery.
Walking alone at night should be avoided at all times regardless of age or gender. If you need to walk by yourself frequently, consider purchasing pepper spray as a way to maintain your personal safety should a problem arise. Staying in tune with your surroundings is another key element to safety, if you are distracted by a phone or listening to music, you may make yourself an easy target for an attack.