Two Sailors Accused of Hate Crime Against Gays to Stand Trial
Two Navy men were ordered Friday to stand trial on charges that they committed hate crimes against four gay men because of their sexual orientation.
Todd Dabrieo, 21, and Murry Murphy, 19, are charged with nine counts of assault with a deadly weapon and battery in incidents outside the Hole, a bar in Point Loma, near midnight July 1.
“It’s the worst gay-bashing case we’ve prosecuted in the last two years,” Deputy Dist. Atty. Luis Aragon said.
One victim lost four teeth and suffered a broken jaw and head injuries. Another was hit over the head with a beer bottle, and a third was struck with a pool cue, which broke, and a rock. A fourth man had to have five stitches to close a wound.
A fifth victim, who was walking home from work, also was struck and knocked to the ground by one of the accused, who suspected he was gay.
“They were on a mission to batter those who they thought were gay,” said Aragon in court.
Murphy’s attorney told San Diego Municipal Judge Frank Brown that his client’s participation was “minimal, if at all.” He unsuccessfully asked Brown to dismiss all the charges.
Attorney Tim Chandler, who represents Dabrieo, failed to have the charges reduced to misdemeanor batteries.
Brown reduced Murphy’s bail from $50,000 to $25,000, but Dabrieo’s bail was left at $50,000. Both men have been in County Jail since their arrests about 15 minutes after the incidents.
San Diego Police Officer John Piner, who arrested both defendants, told the court they referred to gays “in a derogatory manner.”
So-called hate crimes include incidents in which persons are assaulted because of their race, religion, sexual orientation, or beliefs.