Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE) expressed sadness and outrage that Ever Orozco, a 69-year-old man, has died following an alleged anti-LGBT attack in Jackson Heights, NY. (Read the news report here.) The attacker, 22-year-old Steven Torres, reportedly told police that he attacked Orozco because he believed the older man was gay. This is the third reported instance of an anti-LGBT homicide in New York City this year, and the first of an older person. Torres has been charged with murder as a hate crime, and is also being charged in another anti-LGBT attack against a 47-year-old man that occurred last week.
Michael Adams, Executive Director of SAGE, said, “I am outraged and heartbroken about the murder of Ever Orozco. Any instance of violence motivated by hatred against LGBT people is shameful, and even more so when directed at the most vulnerable members of our community. No one who is LGBT, including our elders, should live in fear of being attacked or losing their life simply for being who they are.”
SAGE offers community, support and safe spaces for LGBT older New Yorkers through The SAGE Center; call 212-741-2247 for more information. SAGE is a proud community partner of the New York City Anti-Violence Project (AVP), which is organizing a Community Safety Night on Friday, September 20, 2013 in Jackson Heights, NY. Visit facebook.com/sageusa for more information.
In addition, AVP offers a free and confidential 24-hour bilingual (English/Spanish) hotline at 212-714-1141, where callers can report any instances of violence they have witnessed, and speak with a trained counselor for support. Violence can also be reported anonymously online at avp.org/get-help/report-violence.