On Sunday evening, Bart Janssen was beaten up by a group of 15-year-old boys. The incident occurred at the WoensXL shopping centre. The reason – Bart is gay.
On that evening, as Janssen left his apartment building, he was confronted by several youngsters. “I was just walking by to go shopping at the supermarket around the corner”, he says. “I was in my pyjama pants. They immediately asked if I was gay. When I confirmed this, they started shouting and spitting at me. I quickly fled into the Jumbo.”
When 39-year-old Janssen, who is from Eindhoven, left the supermarket some time later, the same group of boys were waiting for him. The group had grown in the meantime. “They were boys of about fifteen years old of non-Dutch ethnicity. I walked by calmly but, out of nowhere, was kicked in the back. While still reeling from that, I was struck twice more.”
One youngster stopped the attack
One of the boys finally made the group stop the abuse. “That boy told them to stop kicking. He shouted at me to walk away immediately. When I stopped a few meters further they almost caught me again. Luckily I made it into my apartment building just in time.”
Janssen has been left with severe back pain, thanks to the attack. He is still confined to bed as per his doctor’s instructions.
Translator: Chaitali Sengupta, who gives Dutch classes in Meerhoven. Click here for more info.
Editor: Melinda Walraven