A mentally disturbed man has been arrested on second-degree murder charges in connection with the murder of a gay activist in Halifax, Novia Scotia, CBC News is reporting.
Raymond Taavel (right), the former chairman of Gay Pride week and an editor for Wayves magazine, was found lying bleeding in the street outside a gay club, Menz Bar, shortly before 3am Tuesday morning. Paramedics were called but Taavel died on the scene.
A police spokesman told reporters that investigators believe Taavel was trying to break up a fight between two men, one of whom, Andre Noel Denny, began attacking him. Witnesses told police Denny used anti-gay slurs during the assault. Denny is a psychiatric patient who failed to return to the East Coast Forensic Hospital after a one-hour leave. He has been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and grossly psychotic with a history of aggressive impulsivity and unpredictability.
A vigil is being held tonight at 7pm outside Menz Bar and members of Youth Project are asking people to hang Rainbow flags and placards in their windows in Taavel’s honor.