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Rally Against Anti-LGBTQ+ Hate Held In Brooklyn After Violent Attack At Local Deli

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- There was a rally against anti-LGBTQ+ hate in Brooklyn on Wednesday in response to a violent attack that seriously injured two people.

A large group gathered in front of a deli on Broadway near Weirfield Street in Bushwick, the site of a recent brutal hate crime attack.

"We will hold hate accountable one way or the other, and we will put a stop to it," one person said.

"It could be me. It could be anyone else," another person said.

This past Saturday, just after 2 a.m., 36-year-old Abimbola Adelaja and his 28-year-old friend were attacked at the deli by several men armed with a screwdriver.

"They stabbed me four times and stabbed him seven times and beat me with, like, a liquor bottle," Adelaja told CBS2's Alice Gainer. "They were spewing some homophobic remarks. It all was really quick. We tried to avoid them initially."

Adelaja says what's worse, no one in the store helped him.

"They wouldn't even offer me a cell phone, a bottle of water, ask me if I was OK. Literally I was left to sort of fend for myself," he said. "I'm a former Marine. I'm 220 pounds and [6 feet 2 inches tall] ... I did give them a fight, and if I hadn't, I wouldn't be here right now."

Adelaja flagged down a passing ambulance himself.

He says while he is a member of the LGBTQ community, his friend is straight. He assumes the attackers thought they were together.

The suspects also stole an iPhone and cash, then took off.

Three men are accused of attacking two other men in an anti-LGBTQ+ hate crime inside a Brooklyn deli on Sept. 4, 2021. (Credit: NYPD Crime Stoppers)

CBS2 asked workers inside the deli about the attack. The man behind the counter said he wasn't there at the time and they handed surveillance video over to police.

Police say so far, 31-year-old Jonathan Carter, of Brooklyn, has been arrested. He's facing multiple charges, including attempted murder, robbery as a hate crime and harassment as a hate crime.

They're still looking for the other two suspects.

According to the NYPD, there have been 64 sexual orientation hate crimes for 2021 as opposed to 15 for this time last year.

People say this has to stop.

"Show our LGBTQ community members that we're here and an attack on one of them is an attack on all of us," incoming City Council member Sandy Nurse said.

The group took their message on the road, marching through Bushwick, hoping people hear their cries to stop the hate.

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