Hateful Messages Targeting Gays Left on Windshields in Manhattan

Hateful notes targeting the gay community were left on car windshields up and down a number of streets in the Hell's Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan, but police don't believe the threat to be credible. 

Someone posted copies of a handwritten note saying his or her priority was to "kill homosexuals" on car windshields between Eighth and Ninth avenues over the weekend, police said. 

The note was almost incoherent and made disturbing claims in an area of the city that's become a haven for the LGBT community. 

The owner of Vodka Soda bar said his employees were nervous after finding the note just hours after Omar Mateen killed 49 people at a gay nightclub in Orlando. 

Michael Guerriera, owner of City Sandwich on Ninth Avenue -- where one of the most popular items on the menu is the LGBT -- said every threat has to be taken seriously.

"I think by putting our guards down, we are taking it lightly, and I think the only way to do this is fight back," he said.

An NYPD official said officers identified a person of interest and interviewed him. The man, who is schizophrenic, was not found to have committed a crime. 

NYPD Commissioner William Bratton said Wednesday there have been a number of threats made against gay bars and nightclubs in the city, but none appear to be credible.

He said the threats were made by "cowards" who came out of the woodwork after the Orlando shooting. 

There are no known, credible threats against the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in New York, he said, but police will thoroughly investigate each of the threats and police treat all of them seriously.

Bratton says there will also be an increased police presence at the city's gay pride parade on June 26. He predicts this year's parade will be the largest in the city's history.

Further downtown, there were more messages of Orlando-style violence at NYU, which received a "broad threat of violence against American colleges and universities" on Wednesday, according to a university spokesman. 

The college received the threat from an online web submission, according to spokesman John Beckman.

He said that the school wasn't aware of any specific threat against NYU, but it alerted the FBI and NYPD after getting the message. 

"We will be working with law enforcement and following their guidance on campus safety," Beckman said. 

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