Miami Beach

Defendants in 2018 Miami Beach Attack Claim Self-Defense

NBC Universal, Inc.

A group of men accused of beating up a gay couple in Miami Beach back in 2018 is now claiming the actions were self-defense.

Juan Carlos Lopez, Luis Alonso, Adonis Diaz and Pablo Figuerora are facing charges of aggravated battery in the April 8, 2018 attack after the Pride Parade.

According to police, Rene Chalarca and Dmitry Logunov were near public restrooms when they were randomly attacked. Surveillance video shows the couple walking holding hands when a group attacks them. The victims were allegedly called anti-gay slurs by the suspects.

Four years later, the case has yet to go to trial. Now, a judge has to decide on a defense motion to dismiss the case.

Attorneys argued the fighting was out of self-defense, while prosecutors insisted the victims were not the aggressors and the case should move forward.

The state had filed enhanced hate crime charges, which add an automatic 30-year sentence in prison.

If the judge rules self-defense, the case gets dismissed. If not, the case goes on to trial.

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