Things That Matter

Man Charged With Transphobic And Homophobic Attack At LA’s Las Perlas Last Year

Update: Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer has filed charges against a man in connection with the transphobic attack at Las Perlas. The attack happened in August 2019 and it took almost a full year for someone to be arrested.

Eduardo Gonzalez has been charged in the transphobic and homophobic attack at Las Perlas.

Feuer’s office announced that charges had been filed against the man in the straight couple who verbally attacked Latina trans women and gay Latino men. Eduardo Gonzalez has been charged with “one count of making a criminal threat and a second count alleging that the criminal threat constituted a hate crime.”

According to the announcement, Eduardo Gonzalez threatened to get a gun when yelling as the group of LGBTQ+ Latinxs. Videos from the incident show the security team at Las Perlas dragging out the trans women and gay men in chokeholds. The straight couple who hurled the insults and threats stayed in the bar.

“Acts of hate against transgender people have no place in our society,” Feuer said in the annoucement. “Transgender people, especially transgender people of color, already face an unconscionable risk of violence. Perpetrators need to be held accountable.”

Original: Mezcal bar Las Perlas is facing calls for a boycott after security guards kicked out trans women and gay men after an altercation. According to reports, a man and woman maliciously misgendered the women and threatened to kill them. Bar security responded by dragging the trans women out in chokeholds. Here’s a breakdown of what happened and how Las Perlas responded prompting protest and calls for a boycott.

On Friday night, a video went viral of security at Las Perlas, a bar in downtown Los Angeles forcibly removing two trans women.

Credit: Khloe Bienestar / Facebook

The Facebook post by Khloe Bienestar, real last name Perez-Rios, details the events that led to employees of Bienestar, a Latino healthcare organization. According to the post, employees of Bienestar Health Services were at Las Perlas while celebrating DTLA PROUD, a pride event in downtown Los Angeles. While at the bar, a man and woman began harassing the group of trans women and queer men at the bar. What started as transphobic and homophobic slurs escalated into threats on their lives.

The video shows the trans women asking security guards what was wrong when they were grabbed in chokeholds and thrown out of the bar. The post claims the cis-gendered couple was removed from the bar without physical force but that was not the case for the trans women.

The video sparked immediate outrage on social media because of the treatment of the trans women in the video.

Credit: @DTAY_M / Twitter

“Why didn’t they keep us safe?” Jennifer Bianchi, the first transgender woman shown in the video, told The Washington Post. “Why did they kick us out like we were trash?”

Las Perlas released a statement shortly after the backlash mounted and have since deleted it.

Credit: lasperlasla / Instagram

The statement was met with disbelief. Commenters and patrons called out Las Perlas’s statement for downplaying the dangerous situation instigated against the trans women and queer men in the establishment. Instead, the statement attempts to shuck responsibility by saying the removal was done per bar policy, but people weren’t having it.

The bar then released a second statement trying to combat the backlash from the first statement.

Credit: lasperlasla / Instagram

In the second statement, Las Perlas makes pledges to rectify the actions and thoroughly investigate what happened Friday night. The bar owners have pledged sensitivity training for best policies on how to handle situations like this in the future.

But, people just want Las Perlas to admit that what happened was wrong and demanding answers to questions like why people were threatened with death and were thrown out of the bar.

Credit: idalia_rdl / Instagram

In response to the video, people are calling one other people to not just protest by boycotting Las Perlas, but all establishments owned by Pouring With Heart. Pouring With Heart is a hospitality group owned by Cedd Moses that runs several beloved and celebrated bars.

Some of the establishments owned by Pouring With Heart include: 4100 Bar, Arts District Brewing Company, Bar Clacson, Bar Jackalope, Bar Three Piece, Broadway Bar, Caña Rum Bar, Casey’s Irish Pub, Cole’s French Dip, Golden Gopher, Half-Step, Imperial Western Beer Company, The Normandie Club, Seven Grand, The Slipper Clutch, The Streamliner, Tony’s Saloon, and The Varnish.

Other people just flat-out don’t believe the statement.

Credit: a_mazeratti / Instagram

For some, the statement comes a little too late after the owner of the hospitality group placed blame on both sides.

The public outrage comes at a time when Las Perlas was looking to open another location in West Hollywood among other gay bars.

Credit: sofie_vissa / Instagram

It’s clear that West Hollywood patrons and residents are not in favor of the bar opening up in their neighborhood following Friday night’s altercation. According to Eater, Las Perlas was hoping to open their West Hollywood location before the end of the year.

By Saturday, 100 people assembled in front of Las Perlas and protested the establishment until they closed their doors.

The crowd blocked the entrance to the bar chanting “no justice, no peace” and “shut it down.”

You can watch the full video below.

Las night after staff from Bienestar Human Services attempted to celebrate our participation at DTLA proud, we were…

Posted by Khloe Rios-Wyatt on Saturday, August 24, 2019

What do you think about the incident at Las Perlas?

READ: A Model Who Worked For Rihanna’s Fenty Line Tried To Cover Up Her Transphobia By Saying She Was Trans

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New Netflix Docuseries Explores The Summer The Night Stalker Terrorized Los Angeles

Entertainment

New Netflix Docuseries Explores The Summer The Night Stalker Terrorized Los Angeles

Bettmann / Getty Images

Richard Ramirez, a.k.a. The Night Stalker, spent the summer of 1985 terrorizing Los Angeles. Ramirez murdered 13 people during his reign of terror in Southern California. Netflix’s new docuseries is exploring the crime by interviewing law enforcement and family of the victims.

“Night Stalker: The Hunt For a Serial” killer is now streaming on Netflix.

“Night Stalker: The Hunt For a Serial Killer” is the latest Netflix docuseries diving into the true crimes that have shaped American society. Richard Ramirez is one of the most prolific serial killers of all time and single-handedly terrorized Los Angeles during the summer of 1985.

Ramirez fundamentally changed Los Angeles and the people who live there. The serial killer was an opportunistic killer. He would break into homes using unlocked doors and opened windows. Once inside, he would rape, murder, rob, and assault the people inside the home.

The documentary series explores just how Ramirez was able to keep law enforcement at bay for so long. The killer did not have a standard modus operandi. His victims ran the gamut of gender, age, and race. There was no indicator as to who could be next. He also rarely used the same weapon when killing his victims. Some people were stabbed to death while others were strangled and others still were bludgeoned.

While not the first telling of Ramirez’s story, it is the most terrifying account to date.

“Victims ranged in age from 6 to 82,” director Tiller Russell told PEOPLE. “Men, women, and children. The murder weapons were wildly different. There were guns, knives, hammers, and tire irons. There was this sort of feeling that whoever you were, that anybody could be a victim and anybody could be next.”

Family members of the various victims speak in the documentary series about learning of the horror committed to them. People remember grandparents and neighbors killed by Ramirez. All the while, police followed every lead to make sure they left no stone unturned.

“Night Stalker: The Hunt For a Serial Killer” is now streaming on Netflix.

READ: Here’s How An East LA Neighborhood Brought Down One Of America’s Most Notorious Serial Killers

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Video of an Anti-Mask Mob Storming a Los Angeles Grocery Store and Angrily Confronting Customers Goes Viral

Things That Matter

Video of an Anti-Mask Mob Storming a Los Angeles Grocery Store and Angrily Confronting Customers Goes Viral

Screenshot via SamBraslow/Twitter

We may have officially left 2020 behind us, but the drama surrounding the pandemic is still alive and well in 2021. As safety precautions like social distancing and masks remain in place in order to curb the spread of the virus, COVID-deniers and anti-maskers have become further emboldened.

But there hasn’t been such a blatant and obnoxious display of anti-masker activism as what happened recently in Los Angeles.

On Monday, a video went viral of an anti-mask woman screaming and appearing to attack a young man in the grocery store.

The video shows an anti-mask woman angrily running after a young man wearing a mask, at one point trying to plow him down with a shopping cart. As she charges towards him, she cusses at him and accuses him of having tried to hit her. There is no footage of the alleged hitting.

The woman follows the man throughout the grocery store as he tries to get away from her. She continues to strike at and scream at him. At one point, the young man tries to ask a security guard for help to no avail. More anti-mask protestors surround him and yell at him as he tries to distance himself from the situation.

The video was one of many incidents incited by an anti-mask mob in Los Angeles on Sunday.

The mob stormed Los Angeles’s Century City mall and nearby Ralph’s grocery store on Sunday. The group held pro-Trump and anti-mask signs, as well as signs that expressed doubt over the severity of the coronavirus.

In a Twitter thread, reporter Samuel Braslow documented the hours long “protest” of a group of anti-maskers. As the group swarmed the popular Los Angeles Century City mall, they were loud, relentless, and sometimes violent. They yelled inflammatory rhetoric such as “F–k communist China!”.

The Twitter thread also shows the mob storming into a Bloomingdales and chanting “No more masks!”. At one point, a few members of the group start performing a “MAGA” version of the YMCA.

The incident in the grocery store wasn’t the only time that the group had aggressive run-ins with onlookers.

Various videos show the group getting into various arguments, including with a food court worker, a shopper walking with his girlfriend, and an emotional woman who revealed to them that her mother was in the hospital with COVID-19. A male protestor responded: “A lot of people are. That’s life. People die. Your father [sic] is not special.”

While the LAPD and mall security ended up closely monitoring the situation, they never tried to arrest the protestors or force them to leave. According to Braslow, they opted to instead only intervene “when necessary”.

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