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Ariz. Man Says He Did Not Commit Hate Crime

Scottsdale, Ariz. — A third anti-gay hate crime has been reported to Scottsdale, Ariz. police.

On Nov. 17, a bouncer at BS West, a local gay bar, told police that a man in a white T-shirt, tan shorts and a baseball cap threw a beer bottle through the windshield of a gay man’s car. The man was later identified as 24-year-old James Randall Walker.
In a police report the victim, Christion Todd Smalley, said that he and a friend saw Walker and two other men earlier in the evening. At that time he said Walker and the men made “derogatory comments” to him.
Walker said he did not throw the bottle, and that police never told him that he had vandalized a car or harassed two gay men when they arrested him. He told the Scottsdale Republic that police arrested the wrong man.
“There were hundreds of people in Old Town. It could have been anybody,” he said.
“I have friends who are gay,” he added. “I have a good career and a baby boy. I have better things to do than throw a bottle at someone.”
Equality Arizona and other civil rights groups brought up the bottle-throwing incident when Scottsdale’s City Council considered passing an ordinance to prohibit workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. The ordinance passed Dec. 4 with a 4-3 vote.
Walker spent the night in jail on suspicion of criminal damage and disorderly conduct after he swore at an arresting officer. He is scheduled to appear in Scottsdale Municipal Court on Jan. 23 for a pretrial conference.

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