2 men said they were punched 'several times' and called 'monkey pox f-----s' in DC, police investigating as a potential hate crime

Members of the District of Columbia Metropolitan Police Department conduct an investigation into a security threat at Dunbar High School on February 8, 2022 in Washington, DC.
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Police are investigating after two men were assaulted in northwest Washington, DC and labeled anti-gay slurs.
According to a police report, the suspect called the men "Monkeypox f-----s" before fleeing the scene.
The suspect is not yet in custody as police are treating the incident as a suspected hate crime, the Metropolitan Police said.
According to an insider police report, police are investigating an alleged hate crime against two men who were beaten and called anti-gay abuse.
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Two men were walking on a sidewalk in northwest Washington, DC, on Sunday when they were approached by the suspects, who beat them multiple times. The suspects then called them "monkeypox-F-----s," according to the police report.
The suspects fled the scene and are not yet in custody, according to the report.
"This case remains under investigation and an investigation is underway to determine whether it may be motivated by hate/bias," a Metropolitan Police Department official said in a statement. The MPD's LGBTQ liaison office is also investigating the incident.
The alleged hate crime comes as the nation sees a surge in anti-gay sentiment caused by the stigma sparked by the US monkeypox outbreak. The disease primarily affects gay and bisexual men. However, monkeypox can spread between two people regardless of sexuality, typically through skin contact.
In a statement Tuesday, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser said she was "extremely concerned" by the alleged hate crime.
"Whenever a hate crime occurs in our city, it is our shared responsibility to understand the role we all play in building a safer community for all people who live in and visit DC," Bowser said in the statement. "We must stand up for our friends and neighbors, especially now that too much anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric is sweeping our nation."
"We must call out to people in our communities when they are promoting hateful or ignorant ideologies, especially now that people are using public health to stigmatize and discriminate against members of the LGBTQ+ community," the DC Mayor continued. "We hold our DC values ​​high, but protecting and promoting our values ​​is a collective and conscious effort."
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Muriel Bowser
American politician and member of the Democratic Party ...

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