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Two Arrested In Second Midtown Bias Attack

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TWC News: Two Arrested In Second Midtown Bias Attack
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Two men were taken into custody by Port Authority officers early Friday morning after they allegedly shouted anti-gay remarks as they attacked two men near the 33rd Street PATH station. NY1's Mahsa Saiedi filed the following report.

Swollen, bruised and bloodied. Police say an attack on two gay men was motivated by hate.

Investigators say the couple was assaulted at around 5 a.m. Friday near the 33rd street PATH Station.

The attack came just days after and a few streets away from what police say was another bias attack Sunday night after the Knicks game.

"That really can't be tolerated," said one resident. "It's really unacceptable. It's disgusting, really."

Port Authority police say a group of five suspects shouted anti-gay remarks as they attacked the two men.

NY1 is told that when nearby officers arrived, some of the attackers fled the scene.

Two suspects, Asllan Berisha and Brian Ramirez, both 21 and both New York City residents, were arrested.

"It makes me feel worried, because in this part of city, where you have lot of people and lot of diversity, and for this to happen is really shocking, in the middle of the city," said one New York City resident.

Police say the attack occurred after the victims were denied entrance to an after-hours billiards hall on West 32nd Street.

A worker, who didn't want to appear on camera, told NY1 that the men were only denied entrance because the hall was closing.

Many of the people NY1 spoke with were surprised and disturbed, including a couple who just moved to the city from Tennessee.

"Us being a gay couple and stuff, we come through the Port Authority every day, so, I mean, it's scary," said one resident. "We were faced with that kind of thing every day in the South and everything, but being here in New York and stuff, it's kind of crazy knowing that people are still that racist or whatever you want to call it, just be trying to hurt somebody because they're different."

Police are still investigating whether the two attacks are linked. They are looking for the other men involved in Friday's attack, as well as eight people possibly involved in Sunday's attack.

Anyone with information on either case should contact the Crime Stoppers hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS, or text CRIMES and then enter TIP577, or visit www.nypdcrimestoppers.com.

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