Lesbian Gang-Raped in East Bay

Richmond police are offering a $10,000 reward for information  leading to the arrest and conviction of four men who allegedly kidnapped and  gang raped a lesbian Saturday night, Lt. Mark Gagan said today.

Police are investigating the attack as a possible hate crime,  Gagan said.

The assault began at about 9:30 p.m. in the 1500 block of Visalia  Avenue in the city's Belding-Wood neighborhood.

The victim, a 28-year-old woman, was getting out of her car when  she was confronted by four men.

"She was beaten, she was robbed and she was sexually assaulted,"  Gagan said.

A few minutes into the sexual assault, one of the men told the  group that someone was approaching and they forced the victim into her car.

They took her to a desolate area near the Bay Area Rapid Transit  tracks in the 1300 block of Burbeck Avenue and continued to sexually assault  her, Gagan said.

"The victim was physically and sexually assaulted numerous times,"  Gagan said.

During the attack, which lasted for about 45 minutes, the suspects  made several statements about the victim's sexual orientation, Gagan said.

The victim also had a rainbow sticker on her license plate that  identified her as being supportive of the gay community, Gagan said.

Afterward the attack, the suspects fled in the victim's car,  leaving her there naked, Gagan said.

She was able to get help from a nearby resident, who called for  police and an ambulance.

The victim's injuries were serious, but "the extent of the  emotional trauma rivals the extent of the physical trauma," Gagan said.

Although the four men participated in the attack to varying  degrees, they are all being sought on charges of assault with a deadly  weapon, robbery, carjacking, kidnapping and rape in concert with an  enhancement for committing a hate crime.

The first suspect, who appeared to be the leader of the group, was  described as a Hispanic man in his 30s. He was about 5 feet 6 inches tall,  weighed 180 pounds and had black hair, brown eyes and a mustache.

The second suspect was a black man in his early 20s. He was about  5 feet 10 inches tall, weighed about 170 pounds and had black hair and brown  eyes. He goes by the nickname "Blu."

The third suspect was described as a Hispanic man about 18 to 20  years old. He goes by the nickname "Pato."

The fourth suspect was described only as a Hispanic man about 18  to 20 years old.

"The Richmond Police Department is pleading for the community to  come forward and help us find the people responsible for committing this  vicious crime," Gagan said.

Anyone with information about any of the suspects is asked to call  Detective Ysenia Rogers at (510) 672-1717.

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