A gay couple was leaving a local gay club in the city of Monterrey, in Mexico last week when they were targeted and beaten by police officers based on their sexuality. Armando Ocampo Zambrano and Sergio Eduardo Bueno were finishing off their night of partying at 5 a.m. as they headed to a nearby restaurant. It was then that two police cars chased them and upon arriving at their location were stopped and removed by force by the cops. They were then stripped of their wallets and cell phones.
According to Spanish media outlet Escánadala, Bueno retold the incident:
They said we were being detained for disturbing public order. Armando resisted, three police officers pulled him off the premises, tore his shirt and broke his belt then dragged him out with his pants fallen down to his ankles.
The couple also expressed to SDPnoticias that the police officers ridiculed them for being gay and spit on Ocampo’s face as they kicked him.
Ocampo who is an attorney in Mexico City, just last year fought wrongful termination with his employer after being fired when the directors learned of his sexual orientation.
Ocampo took to Twitter to talk about the incident:
We were attacked by policemen @mtygob
Proud to be: to fight discrimination, social struggle, community visibility #LGBTTTI, valid rule of law, to demand dignified treatment and respond to the laws where there is not *intact* even ½ of the law. NOTHING justifies violence.
He also took to Facebook in a post that has since been removed with some powerful words that demonstrate hope and work to be done:
Turning the page…and hopefully this will be the only thing I write and have to share about this incident.
Thank you to those who have written, intervened or who have checked in after this unfortunate misuse of police force in #Monterrey
Especially to my husband, our family, friends, the movement of equality in MTY and the Mexican Coalition LGBTTTI+ for always caring, you make me proud.
Even with this occurrence I am firm in that any citizen has the RIGHT to be out and about without the fear of persecution, intimidation, or aggression from the police—even if it’s at the break of dawn and if you happen to be “faggots”, queers, husbands and happen to leave a gay club in Monterrey.
Nothing, absolutely NOTHING gives the police the right to use violence, arbitrarily detain without cause, intimidate, steal, hit, humiliate, and without respect for human dignity and due process.
If it is illegal to visit the city, then we are guilty. There are laws that the police from Monterrey should have observed and everything failed: protocols, training, humane treatment, doctors, and judges in the second most important city in the country no less. I don’t want to imagine what has happened to those who haven’t been able to escape something like this.
This case is in higher hands now. As for me, I am turning the page, the past is the past and we have to move forward, return to normalcy because there is much work to be done for #LGBT and #GenderViolence and we all have to dedicate our lives to this.
#NotOneStepBack #ForEquality #StopHomophobia #NoDiscrimination