A gay Brazilian man who has spent the last year and a half living in Ireland was brutally beaten with a steel bar outside of his Dublin apartment building on September 21 — and it was all because of a simple kiss, he told Gay City News.
It was around 3:30 a.m. on a Saturday morning when 28-year-old Danilo Matta was returning to his apartment, which is located above a bar, after a night out with his boyfriend and another friend. Matta’s boyfriend was accompanying him to make sure he got home safely, and the pair shared a kiss before his boyfriend hopped on his bike and went home.
Matta was unaware, however, that trouble was brewing in the background as soon as his boyfriend took off. He said a group of five or six troublemaking teenagers saw the kiss and started walking over to him. One of the boys in that group screamed, “What’s going on here?”
“I saw a bar in his hand, but I didn’t have enough time to do something,” Matta said via Facebook messenger. “He hit me with the bar in my face — then another person was coming with a bike.”
Bloodied and dazed, Matta was hit so hard with the steel bar that he lost some memory of the attack. He said he “felt dizzy” and had difficulty understanding what was happening.
Matta said he was able to run away and escape the scene, but not before he suffered physical injuries to his face. He denied medical assistance when an ambulance arrived because he simply wanted to get some rest, given that it was nearly 4 a.m.
“Fortunately, I have very nice people around me here,” he said. “I went just to a dentist because I was not feeling a tooth. But it’s fine. Nothing too serious happened.”
Matta called police at the time he was attacked, but they did not answer until later that morning. He went to the police station and reported the crime, though he said on September 27 that he had yet to hear back from them about the case.
He understandably remains shaken up from the beating and is scared to walk on the street. He is especially worried when he sees a group of teenagers, but he stressed that he is okay.
“I’m getting better and it will pass,” he said.
The profound effects of the vicious attack have not stopped Matta from maintaining an exceptionally positive attitude and outlook on the future. His story has gained attention online and in the news media, triggering an outpouring of support that has warmed his heart as he continues to recover from the mental and physical effects of the attack.
“I have received so much love from so many people,” he said. “It has made me stronger.”