Gay sailor found dead at San Diego base may be victim of hate crime

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August ProvostGay sailor August Provost was found dead Tuesday early morning on the Camp Pendleton base in San Diego, after complaining to his family that he was being harassed. A person of interest is already in custody but no charges have been filed. Gay activists and a local congressman, are viewing the killing as a potential hate crime. Local news coverage below…

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) has released the following statement:

“Our thoughts are with the Provost family at this time as authorities work to learn what happened in the early morning hours this past Tuesday,” said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese.  “The Human Rights Campaign has confirmed Congresswoman Susan Davis has been in touch with officials at the base and is tracking the investigation.  We know that every day members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community are targeted for simply being who they are.  Furthermore, our gay or lesbian soldiers struggle with the extra burden of not serving openly and honestly based on the discriminatory policy of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ As we monitor the investigation, our community must continue to raise awareness on a law that we know hurts military readiness and national security while putting American soldiers at risk.”

Provost’s partner, Kaether Cordero of Houston, learned of the news of his partner’s death from a newspaper reporter. He said that while Provost was openly gay, he kept his life quiet for the most part. “People who he was friends with, I knew that they knew… He didn’t care that they knew. He trusted them.”

Seaman August Provost was only 29.

Post by ILO on 07/02/09 at 3:36 pm