Homophobic violence on the increase in South Yorkshire

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Violent homophobic attacks in South Yorkshire are on the increase, according to new police figures.

Between January and October there were 57 offences reported to South Yorkshire Police, up two on the year before.

In 2012 there were 45 attacks reported.

Gay rights charity Stonewall has expressed concern about a spate of ‘particularly violent’ attacks nationally.

Spokesman Richard Lane said: “We know that homophobic hate crimes are a real issue in the UK.

“One in six lesbian, gay and bisexual people have experienced a homophobic hate crime or incident in the last three years.”

A spokesman for South Yorkshire Police said: “There has seen a small increase in reports of hate incidents motivated by a person’s sexual orientation in South Yorkshire in recent years.

“It is a positive step that more people feel able to come forward and report this type of crime to police but we are aware it is still under-reported.

“Anyone who is a victim of this type of crime is encouraged to report it to police and can be assured it will be treated seriously and investigated thoroughly.”