A man is facing hate crime charges after he allegedly attacked several bar patrons and yelled homophobic slurs at them early Thursday morning.
Police said 27-year-old Billy Jack Kroneman was arrested on suspicion of battery and disorderly conduct with a hate crime enhancer. Kroneman was also tentatively charged with resisting/obstructing arrest and bail jumping.
According to an incident report, the victims of the attack, some of whom are gay, were at two West Main Street bars shortly after 1:30 a.m. when Kroneman yelled homophobic slurs at them. Police said some of the victims helped escort Kroneman away from the bars after the incident.
A while later, Kroneman returned and continued to use the slurs, police said. Officials said Kroneman was looking for a physical confrontation.
One 34-year-old man reported that he was punched in the face several times. He was bleeding when police arrived. Another victim, a 42-year-old woman, told police Kroneman pushed her. A 41-year-old man reported he suffered knee, elbow and hand injuries while trying to stop Kroneman from attacking others.
When police arrived, Kroneman was still shouting homophobic slurs at the victims, the report said.