A gay couple at a mobile home park can sleep peacefully now that their homophobic neighbor can’t harass them anymore.
Ormond Beach Police Department officers arrested 49-year-old Tjay Laferrara after a gay couple living in a mobile home park say he had been terrorizing them. The couple said that Laferrara, one of their neighbors, walked up to them once while they were walking their dog. He then yelled obscenities and threatened to beat them up.
According to WFTV9, Laferrara’s wife refuted these accusations against her husband. She believes her husband isn’t homophobic and the argument was in the heat of the moment. Not an act charged by hate. Despite those claims, a witness backed up the couple’s story that Laferrara initiated the fight.
The witness also claimed that Laferrara’s harassment of the couple was an ongoing problem in the neighborhood. The couple backed up this assessment by stating this incident was the fourth time Laferrara targeted them with anti-gay slurs.
After the lastest argument, the couple called the police. They feared Laferrara actually backing up his threats. The police then arrested the neighbor. Laferrara is now being charged of stalking/harassing and assault/intentional threat to do violence. In addition, a hate crime charge is pending. If that hate crime charge is added, the threat of violence charge would be changed from a second-degree offense to a first-degree misdemeanor and the stalking charge would then upgrade to a third-degree felony.
The court case continues.