Nick Smith and Michael Baker
The Caribbean island nation of Saint Lucia has apologised after an American gay couple and a friend were brutally attacked by a gang using anti-gay slurs.
Michael Baker and Nick Smith were showering at their friend Todd Wiggins’ rented cottage on the island on March 2 just before dinner when a gang of armed men burst in. The three Americans were brutally beaten and robbed, as described by Baker on Facebook.
“They began to kick me in the back and the side. I was on my side, looking at Nick’s face. I could feel warm water running down my back, and realised it was not water, it was blood. I saw the blood flowing out of my forearm,” wrote Baker.
“They began to tell us that they hated White people. They hated faggots. They asked where we were from. We told them the United States. They told us again how much they hated us. They asked if we were gay. Why had we showered together? Todd and I both said it was because the water heater was so small. They said if we were faggots they would kill us. I saw my penis lying on my belly, and I thought they would cut it off and probably Nick’s, too.”
Now, the government of Saint Lucia has issued its “sincere apologies” for the attack. “St Lucia does not condone such acts of violence which appeared to be perpetrated by individuals whose views do not reflect sentiments of the majority of law-abiding citizens,” it said in a statement.
“Whether or not this crime was motivated by anti-gay sentiment, or during the course of robbery, it is none-the-less unacceptable behaviour and our destination will not tolerate it. Our law enforcement authorities are pursuing this matter relentlessly.”
Two of the five men implicated in the attack have reportedly been arrested and most of the stolen items have been found. Baker, Smith and Wiggins have returned to the US and are expected to make a full recovery.