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Zachary Kocman, Joseph Murphy: Bias-motivated charges for yelling gay slur, assault

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Zachary Kocman, nineteen, and Joseph Murphy, eighteen, had no marks on their adult record prior to last month. But they're currently looking down the barrel of a bias-motivated crime charge, as well as third-degree assault, because, according to an arrest affidavit on view below, they saw two men holding hands and decided to yell "Faggots" at them.

Here's the account Kocman shared with investigators, as quoted in the affidavit.

On July 18, Kocman and Murphy were driving along 52nd Avenue when they saw two men walking and holding hands. "Look, fags," he remembered Murphy saying.

Sharing this observation with each other apparently wasn't enough, however. Kocman said that as he and Murphy cruised past in their car, the latter yelled "Faggots" out the window.

At that point, a traffic signal forced them to stop close enough to the targets of their invective that one of them threw a soda at them. That pissed off Murphy and Kocman, with Murphy promptly parking the car behind a building and both of them chasing the man who'd chucked the pop. They dogged him down an alley, through a parking lot, across Federal and down a sidewalk before Kocman caught up to him and allegedly punched him several times in the face.

Anthony Pyles, the victim of this pummeling, soon contacted police. Denver District Attorney's Office spokeswoman Lynn Kimbrough says he memorized the license plate number of the vehicle in question, which made tracking down Murphy and Kocman a snap.

The DA's office has now charged each man with third-degree assault, a misdemeanor. But additional counts of bias-motivated crime are both felonies.

Look below to see booking photos of Kocman and Murphy, as well as the aforementioned affidavit.

Joseph Murphy and Zachary Kocman Arrest Affidavit

More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "Police impersonators: Could suspect in Denver be responsible for attacks in Aurora, Jeffco?"

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