MANHATTAN — Police want to question eight Knicks fans in the beating of two gay men near Madison Square Garden on Sunday, which the NYPD is investigating as a possible hate crime.
The NYPD released a video Wednesday evening showing the eight people of interest, most wearing Knicks caps or jerseys, wanted in connection with the attack that left one victim with a broken nose and another with a broken wrist.
Nick Porto, 27, and Kevin Atkins, 22, who both live in Brooklyn, were walking arm-in-arm on Eighth Avenue near West 34th Street about 5 p.m. Sunday when they were assaulted by a group of rowdy Knicks fans who were shouting homophobic slurs, Porto said.
The attack occurred as the Indiana Pacers played the Knicks just steps away in Madison Square Garden.
Police confirmed Wednesday that the assault was being investigated as a possible hate crime.
"I've never had a feeling like this before in the city," Porto, whose nose was broken in the attack, told DNAinfo New York earlier this week.
"I didn't know that it's not over, that this sort of stuff still happens."
Police previously released details about one person of interest in the case, described as a man in his 20s, about 6 feet tall, with brown hair and a tattoo on his left forearm. He was last seen wearing a white No. 7 Knicks jersey, a white T-shirt, white sneakers and blue jeans, police said.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website at www.NYPDCRIMESTOPPERS.com or by texting tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.