A Heidelberg woman was savagely attacked on her way home after a night out with friends in Collingwood, leaving her with serious facial injuries.
The attack occurred just after midnight on November 30 as Tracey Mitchell, her girlfriend and friends were waiting for a taxi after a night at The Glasshouse Hotel.
Mitchell, 39, was knocked unconscious in the attack and said although she can’t recall the whole incident, remembers holding hands with her girlfriend when she turned around to a man who said -œfucking lesbians.
The man then hit Mitchell, knocking her unconscious.
The attack occurred on Wellington St, near Peel St. According to Mitchell’s friends a man -œcame out of nowhere, assaulted one of the party, then hit Mitchell and bolted from the scene.
-œAs I turned around he king hit me, Mitchell told Southern Star.
Police, however, are not treating the case as a homophobic attack as there is not enough evidence to prove it provoked the man.
Mitchell was taken to St Vincent’s Hospital with head wounds and may need corrective surgery at a later stage to repair the tissue damage to her forehead, due to the force she hit the ground with.
The attack has left Mitchell seriously shaken and scared of going out in the area she’s frequented safely for the last 14 years.
-œI’ve always felt comfortable because it’s a gay area … you always have that fear in the back of your head, that one day I’m going to be belted for being a lesbian … but you never really think it would happen, she said.
-œEven when friends asked me for dinner the other night, I was on edge, turning around to see what sort of people were behind me.
Mitchell said she felt particularly targeted in the attack.
-œPeople stereotype … I’m probably the most obvious-looking lesbian there, and I felt like I was attacked because I had short hair.
-œI’m glad he didn’t hit my girlfriend, but why did he hit me?
When in hospital, rather than worry about her attacker, one of the first things Mitchell said to her partner, whom she is planning to marry in May, concerned her facial cut.
-œThe first thing I said was, -˜I’m going to look horrible for the wedding’. She said -˜no you won’t’.
Mitchell also claims it took much convincing for hospital staff to allow her partner to be by her bedside.
According to police, the suspect is described as 5’7, southern European in appearance, late 30s, medium to solid build, dark hair with grey flecks with possible receding hairline .
No arrests have been made, however inquires are still continuing.