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Man arrested for anti-gay hate crimes and trying to choke police dog

The Independent logo The Independent 5 days ago Josh Marcus
A mugshot of Alexander Joseph Furrier, who is accused of anti-gay hate crimes and attacking a police dog.  - Courtesy of Palo Alto Police Department © Courtesy of Palo Alto Police Department

A mugshot of Alexander Joseph Furrier, who is accused of anti-gay hate crimes and attacking a police dog.

- Courtesy of Palo Alto Police Department

Police in Palo Alto, California, have apprehended a man accused of violent, anti-gay hate crime and attacking a police dog.

Early on Sunday morning, officers arrived to arrest Alexander Joseph Furrier, 26, who allegedly followed two gay men and a woman while spouting offensive remarks and anti-gay slurs. When one of the men asked Furrier to leave, he allegedly assaulted the man in his 60s and left him unconscious.

"According to police, the suspect then punched the man several times and while continuing to direct homophobic epithets at him,” a police officials said of the incident. “The suspect also threw the woman to the ground when she tried to intervene."

Upon seeing police, Mr Furrier allegedly fled to a nearby apartment block, where he did not comply with police requests to give himself up.

“When a police dog was brought in to help take him into custody, officers said the suspect kicked the canine repeatedly and attempted to choke the dog,” the statement continued. “The dog bit the suspect in the leg and he was taken into custody without further incident."

Mr Furrier was treated for leg injuries after the bit, and the police K-9 reported was cut above one eye and had an injured paw.

He is charged with felony battery, felony hate crime, felony assault on police dog, and resisting arrest. He is being held in Elmwood Correctional Facility in Milpitas, California, without bail, and will appear in court on Thursday.

The situation began the previous night, when Mr Furrier, the woman, who he knew, and a group of friends attended a downtown bar then a house party in the area. The woman eventually left the party with two companions, whom she identified as gay, prompting Mr Furrier to allegedly follow and harass them.

Eventually the group parted ways, but Mr Furrier allegedly continued to harass the woman, even after she asked him to leave. One of the men returned and asked her if she needed help, prompting Mr Furrier’s alleged violent outburst.

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