A 46-year-old gay man found a homophobic slur scrawled across the door of his apartment in Ashfield, an inner west Sydney suburb in New South Wales, last month. The homophobe called on people to “bash” Trent Chippindall for being gay.

Trigger Warning: This story has details and visuals of a homophobic incident, which might be distressing to some readers. For 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention call Lifeline on 13 11 14. For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or webchat.

Chippindall complained to the NSW police about the homophobic incident that traumatised him to such an extent that he moved his residence to another neighbourhood.

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“It is scary and no one should ever feel like this to the point that they need to move… not in 2022,” Chippindall told Star Observer.

‘He Was Screaming Outside My Windows’

Chippindall had moved into his apartment on Oprington Street in August 2021 and it had been relatively uneventful until Match 19, 2022, when he found someone had scrawled a homophobic slur on his door.

“Poof Lives here Bash Him,” said the writing on his door.

Chippindall immediately called the NSW police and was put in touch with a LGBTQI Liaison Officer. Later that night, the homophobe returned to his door.

A homophobic slur was scrawled across the door of Trent Chippindall’s apartment in Ashfield, an inner west Sydney suburb in New South Wales, last month. Image: Supplied

“He  was screaming outside my windows ‘poof, fag,  you called the police on me. I’m going to get ya’,” recalls Chippindall. “It was confronting, and I became overcome by panic and anxiety and felt isolated and vulnerable.””

Chippindall, who grew up in the inner west Sydney suburb of Erskineville, said he had faced homophobic behaviour in the past.

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“I have been subject to homophobic behaviour in the past but nothing to the extent that I felt that my self respect had been taken away from me, hating my home and wanting to move,” said Chippindal. “(The incident) put me into a shell and I was actually scared to be myself in the inner west suburb I was born and raised in.”

Disappointed With NSW Police Response

Chippindall said that he was disappointed at the way the police responded to the incident and had lost his faith in the police and criminal justice system.

“The police have literally done nothing. No one or any service checked up on me and it’s sad how people are left to their own devices at a time like this,” he said.

“We need services. The police force needs to do a better job. I was told when they arrived, we can’t do anything, our holding cells are full so if he comes back and does anything call us. So basically I need to be stabbed or worse for them to do anything,” said Chippindal, who moved houses within days of the incident.

“The only thing I could do was to move away from the toxic environment and to a safer place fast which I did. But now I have thoughts of does he know where I live, did he follow me?,” said Chippindal.

Star Observer contacted the NSW Police for a response. A NSW Police spokesperson told Star Observer that “a report has been made to police and the matter remains under investigation by Burwood Police.”

Chippindall wrote about his experience on social media and said that he had received overwhelming support. He hopes to work on helping people who are victims of hate crimes.

If you feel distressed reading the story, you can reach out to support services.

For 24 hour crisis support and suicide prevention call Lifeline on 13 11 14

For Australia-wide LGBTQI peer support call QLife on 1800 184 527 or webchat.

 

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