These two black gay American soldiers say they were beaten by 10 thugs for dancing “a little more vigorously” than others in a Croatian nightclub.
The two Americans, named in reports as soldiers Ny’Zavian Dozier, 24, who also moonlights as a popular Instagram fitness model, and Keith D. Rowe, 25, were reportedly attacked as they were having fun in the Opera nightclub in the Croatian city of Zadar just after 3 am.
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
Video Credit: CEN/@dreeeeewey
Reports state 10 men began beating the men and Rowe posted a video on Instagram where he can be seen with a black eye and cuts to his chin saying: “Me and Dozier got jumped by 10 Croatian men and basically we were fighting for our lives. There was one point when I believe there was a guy that had me in a headlock…”
The soldier went on to say they were helped by a girl they met at the club that night who took them to the hospital.
He added: “She is my angel, an amazing friend.”
A police investigation has been launched and a police source stated: “On the night of Saturday, Sunday, after three o’clock, police received reports that several people had taken part in a fight, and upon entering the field, it was determined that the men, American citizens ‘danced a little more vigorously’ and that annoyed these men who attacked them.
“We are still determining whether this is a hate attack. We are looking for the perpetrators, and we cannot confirm at this time that they are US soldiers.”
Reports claim that both victims were under the influence of alcohol and did not report the circumstances of the incident during the police intervention.
Video Credit: CEN/@dreeeeewey
The criminal investigation will continue, however, both men have left the territory of the Republic of Croatia and subsequently made additional statements about the incident on social media.
An official statement by the American Embassy in Zagreb read: “The U.S. Embassy in Zagreb condemns the recent violent attacks on two US tourists in Zadar. The well-being and security of U.S. citizens abroad is one of the State Department’s top priorities. The Embassy is ready to provide appropriate assistance to American citizens in need and their families. Due to privacy issues, we are unable to comment further on this case.”
The owner of the Opera Club, Pjerino Bebic, told Croatian media that he was not at the club during the incident.
He added: “I condemn any violence, we at the Opera have such a relationship that all our guests are welcomed and no one ever looks at skin colour, religion or anything like that. There were a lot of guests in the club on Sunday night. Our staff intervened to prevent a major incident.
“They called the police who took statements from everybody. Our staff, along with the manager, did everything they could. I’m very disappointed when any hospitality facility in Zadar is mentioned this way. We will strive to make our guests feel welcome always.”
The investigation is ongoing. At the time of writing, no arrests had been reported.
LGBT rights in Croatia have expanded in recent years, but LGBT people still face some legal challenges. Since 2014 , same-sex couples have effectively enjoyed rights equal to heterosexual married couples in all aspects except full adoption rights. Currently, a single person has the right to foster, but a person in a same-sex marriage does not.
The United States military formerly excluded gay men, bisexuals, and lesbians from service until the 1993 law known as “Don’t ask, don’t tell”. The Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell Repeal Act of 2010 saw restrictions on service by gay, lesbian, and bisexual personnel ended as of September 2011.
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Story By: Ana Marjanovic, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Central European News
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