A transgender woman and her friends – and a bystander who tried to intervene – say they were the victims of a transphobic attack in Manchester city centre that was caught on video.
Police were called to reports of a disturbance on Chatham Street at around 11.20pm on Friday, August 28.
In the clip, a man is seen being pushed over in the middle of a road while a car blasts its horn.
"Get away from him right now!" the person filming says.
The girls, described as a "pack of wolves", then appear to rain down blows on him while he is on the ground.
Two of the victims said they wanted to talk about the incident publicly to ensure change happens to ensure similar incidents don’t happen again, Manchester Evening News reports.
Adam Ali, 21, and his two pals, who wish to remain anonymous, had decided to go out for a drink on Canal Street for a "socially-distanced" celebration of Manchester Pride and were approached by four young people on the way home.
"They were really loud and really obnoxious – you could hear them a mile away," Adam said.
He said they were "really friendly and sociable to begin with" but the conversation soon turned nasty when they spotted his trans friend and began getting in her personal space.
Adam said: "One of them called her gorgeous and beautiful and then asked her if she could give her a hug and have a picture with her like she was some kind of animal in the zoo.
"My friend said no because of Covid and because they were strangers and you could just then tell that she wasn’t happy that my friend didn’t want to reciprocate."
Adam, who filmed the incident on his phone, says the girl "instantly switched" and started verbally assaulting his friend and using transphobic slurs while claiming to be pregnant.
Jack Weir, 26, was standing nearby and saw the argument happening in the street and tried to intervene in order to stop the trans woman from being attacked.
"I was outside my apartment talking to my friend and I saw a group of people having a go at a trans woman," Jack told the title.
He said it "started getting physical" so he pushed away one of the aggressive girls to "shield" the trans woman.
Jack added: "Her friends then all ganged up on me and started dragging me about and yelling at me telling me the girl was pregnant – they were like a pack of wolves."
Following the incident, Jack went to the hospital to get checked over because he said he was scratched and hit his head while being attacked by the gang, making him fear he could have a concussion.
Luckily, he got the all-clear.
In a statement, Greater Manchester Police said they were treating the incident with "utmost seriousness" and an investigation is underway.
Inspector Jonathan Shilvock, of GMP's City of Manchester district, said: "We treat reports of this kind with the utmost seriousness and do not tolerate hateful behaviour towards any of our communities.
"I would like to reassure members of the public that our investigation is ongoing and we are committed to ensuring anyone who committed a criminal offence faces justice.
"Upon the arrival of officers on Saturday night, one adult and three juveniles were arrested and removed from the city centre.
"Officers consulted the victims who agreed to provide statements in the following days – these statements are in the process of being obtained.
"Once this has been completed, the evidence will be reviewed and appropriate action will be taken.
“Throughout this process, officers have maintained regular contact with the victims.
"Greater Manchester Police has an active Pride network and works closely with members of the LGBTQ+ community to ensure they are treated fairly and equally.
“Victims are encouraged to report crimes via the police, Crimestoppers or the LGBT Foundation who can also offer specialist support.”
Anyone with information should contact police on 0161 856 4275 quoting 3244 of 29/08/20 or the independent charity – Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.