New Hampshire Law Enforcement Files Civil Rights Complaint in Gay Assault Case

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New Hampshire law enforcement authorities have filed a civil rights complaint against a Manchester man accused of assaulting a gay couple oMay 11.

According to the Associated Press: The complaint filed Thursday by the attorney general’s office alleges that a 35-year-old man saw a couple holding hands and walking in Manchester on May 11 and assaulted one of them. Authorities say he told police he did not approve of homosexuality and objected to their public display of affection. A violation of the state’s Civil Rights Act is punishable by a fine of up to $5,000. A message left at a phone number for the man was not immediately returned.

Back in March Rep. Dick Marston, a Manchester Republican was widely derided for comments he made referring to gay people as deviants and degenerates in his opposition to  House Bill 238. 238 would bar people from using someone’s perceived gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation as a criminal defense in a manslaughter case. The bill would eliminate what rights groups have called the “gay panic” defense.

It would direct how a court could determine whether a defendant “was under the influence of extreme mental or emotional disturbance caused by extreme provocation.” The proposed bill would dictate that provocation could not include “discovery of, knowledge about, or potential disclosure of the victim’s actual or perceived gender, gender identity, gender expression, sex, or sexual orientation.”

The bill would also exclude “unwanted non-forcible romantic or sexual advances towards the defendant” as grounds for a defense in manslaughter.

Marston remarked, “We refer to people as gay or ‘LBGs’ or so on and so forth, and we want to carve them out and say they got special privileges. Our Constitution of New Hampshire as I understand it covers everybody to begin with. And we only a number of years ago amended our Constitution about discrimination towards somebody. We don’t want to do that. But I’m just saying, we don’t want to have special privileges for special people.”

Immediately after that comment, he continued with the reference to “sexual deviants.”

The bill goes into effect in January of 2022.