UK Police Search for 2 Men Who Allegedly Forced Teen to Apologize for Being Gay

Tuesday December 5, 2017

British police are looking for two men who allegedly put a teenage boy in a headlock while riding the Tube in London in October and forced him to apologize for being gay, the Independent reports.

The alleged incident took place on Oct. 21 around 11:10 p.m. when the 19-year-old boy was riding the city's subway. The victim and his friends were wearing fancy outfits for an event. After the two men boarded the train, they began verbally harassing him and a friend by using gay slurs, British Transport Police said.

When they were challenged, the British Transport Police said the men became "more aggressive" and one of them allegedly put the victim into a headlock and throttled him. The second man then allegedly took the teen's phone and threatened to stab him. The men allegedly demanded the victim apologize for being gay. The teen was forced to do so while he struggled to breathe, according to the report by the Independent.

After letting him go, the men gave the phone back to the victim but a fight allegedly ensued between the two men and the victim's friends.

One of the victim's friends, a 25-year-old woman, was punched and pushed to the ground, the Independent reports. She was bruised, but the teen placed in the headlock did not sustain any injuries.

"Officers would like to speak to the people shown in the images as they may have information which could help the investigation," a spokesperson for the British Transport Police told the Independent. "Hate crime will not be tolerated by British Transport Police.

"We believe that everyone has the right to travel safety," they added. "We won't tolerate behavior where someone is targeted because they are perceived to be different, or made to feel uncomfortable on their journey."