New surveillance video footage has been released that shows the man who burned a pair of Pride flags outside Alibi Lounge, a gay bar in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood.
A young man in sneakers and a short-sleeved shirt can be seen in the grainy footage approaching the bar’s entrance, setting both rainbow flags on fire with a lighter, and then walking away.
Help us ensure that everyone can celebrate #PrideMonth free from fear & discrimination.
On 5/31 at 12:15 AM in front of 2376 7th Ave (Alibi Lounge) in Harlem, the suspect set fire to 2 pride flags that were displayed outside. If you have info, call @NYPDTips at 800-577-TIPS. pic.twitter.com/hWiONq7rwz
— NYPD NEWS (@NYPDnews) June 5, 2019
NYPD was called to the scene last Friday night, the New York Post reported. By the time officers arrived, the burning Pride Month display had been extinguished. No one was injured.
“Some asshole set our rainbow flags on fire! It’s a hate crime!” Alibi owner Alexi Minko posted on social media. “To the homophobic coward, we will make our mission to find you! It’s #pridemonth motherfucker!”
The arsonist remains at large and police continue to investigate the incident as a possible bias crime.
— Alibi Lounge (@lounge_alibi) May 31, 2019
Thank you beautiful stranger (s)! Happy Pride everyone! pic.twitter.com/WMMxLmFJmF
— Alibi Lounge (@lounge_alibi) June 3, 2019
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you, to everyone, our wonderful neighborhood in #Harlem, the @NYPD , @HarlemPride @TheRevAl , and all of you who have sent messages, called on the phone and stopped by! Happy Pride! pic.twitter.com/UsKYADSxTo
— Alibi Lounge (@lounge_alibi) June 2, 2019
“I am disgusted by the burning of a Pride flag outside an LGBTQ bar in Harlem early yesterday morning,” tweeted New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
“There is no place for hate in New York. Rather than divide New Yorkers, this despicable act will only strengthen our commitment to tolerance, equality and justice for every individual.”
Whoopi Goldberg also mentioned the “really ugly incident” of vandalism on The View.
By Monday, Alibi had already received a gift of replacement flags from a “beautiful stranger.”