A Queens man was charged Wednesday with assault and attempted assault as a hate crime for attacking an openly gay man in a SoHo bodega earlier this month, police said.
The victim, 30-year-old Daniel Lennox-Choate, was waiting in line with his husband at the Prince Street store, near Sullivan Street, on August 2 when 57-year-old Thomas Clabough walked in.
“This used to be a nice neighborhood,” Clabough allegedly said, adding a few anti-gay expletives, a law enforcement official said.
Clabough was charged on Wednesday with assault in the third degree as a hate crime, a felony.
Clabough then attacked Lennox-Choate, “sucker punching” him, according to his husband Larry Lennox-Choate’s Facebook post. Larry then said he defended his husband, throwing Clabough out of the store at about 2:30 p.m.
“It’s hard to believe that in 2015 we would have to deal with anti-gay hate crimes in soho of all places but that’s what happened today,” Larry Lennox-Choate wrote, adding that they “refuse to be victims.”
Clabough was awaiting arraignment on Wednesday and could not be reached for comment.
On Wednesday, Larry Lennox-Choate wrote on Facebook that he was happy Clabough was charged.
“Good always triumphs over evil,” he wrote. “It’s a good day for freedom. Justice is in the air and it smells damn good.”
The couple both graduated from West Point and were married at the chapel in 2013, becoming the first gay couple to do so.