Arrest Made In March LGBT Hate Crime | WABE 90.1 FM

Arrest Made In March LGBT Hate Crime

Jan 16, 2015

Atlanta Police confirm to WABE they've made an arrest in a March assault investigators labeled a gay-targeted hate crime.

Atlanta police arrested 23-year-old Diego Ramirez of Atlanta and charged him with battery. Ramirez, seen here in a picture from his Facebook profile, is suspected of assaulting a gay man in Midtown last March.

APD spokesman Ralph Woolfolk said in an email the Fugitive Unit arrested 23-year-old Diego Ramirez Thursday and charged him with battery. Ramirez was transported to the Fulton County Jail. It's not clear if he has an attorney.

Ramirez is suspected of attacking and throwing a gay man into traffic on Juniper St. in Midtown.

The victim's partner, Bryan Long, says he's pleased police made the arrest.  Even so, he believes the arrest came as a result of media attention and not because APD was invested in the case.

"I’m frustrated it took 10 months to get to this point," Long tells WABE. "I feel like that I’ve had to push the Atlanta Police Department every step of the way.”

Police initially had a good amount of evidence to go on, including a license plate number and both cell phone video and security footage. But they still labeled the assault a “cold case.”

In an earlier interview with WABE, Officer Eric King, a LGBT liaison with the department, said officers had followed up on leads but couldn't gather enough evidence to effect an arrest.

Last month, the GA Voice and other local media — including WABE — picked up the story.  And that led to a tip. Long says that media attention is responsible for the case gaining renewed momentum.

APD did not respond to WABE’s interview request.