The LiveLeak header has police calling this a 'hate crime'.
Via the local news, Ms. Cole explains that the attack was not a hate crime but the continuance of an earlier sexual assault.
Cole's boyfriend and the father of her child (probably can't get married without losing Medicaid benefits for their bastard; nothing personal just English) works as a disc jockey at a club in downtown Springfield, MO. Cole had gone outside the club when she was accosted and forcibly touched by a "group" of men. She got away and went back inside to tell her boyfriend. They, I would say, unwisely, went back out to get a better description of her attackers. Presumably they were attacked as they were then leaving the area, thinking that the confrontation was over.
Cole strikes me as a native, if not of Springfield, at least of the region. She comes off as your typical low-class white person, as our president might say, but she doesn't seem to be at fault here, aside from imprudence. She is a scrappy, tough little redneck girl who, after being scared, became angry and wanted to punish her attackers. That was reasonable, but, she didn't really consider the odds. I give her boyfriend credit for nerve if not for sense.
I can't fault him, though, because I know Cole's type, and she would never have let him forget that he backed down. She reminds me of my wife and my granddaughter -- who inherited her grandmother's Crusader mentality. Unfortunately, right does not always make might. As you can see from the video, scrappy and defiant, while noble, has trouble overcoming a significant mass deficit.
If you look at this map on any given day, you will usually see a cluster of pins dead-center in downtown -- right where this assault occurred just off the Square, mere yards from where the Wild Bill Hickok-Davis Tutt Shootout took place. You can zoom in on the map and see where South Street comes off Park Central Square.
Not only does nothing good happen after midnight, not a whole lot good happens around the Square after dark. Last summer, I took my train-obsessed grandson down to Commercial Street, and we crossed the "historic" footbridge over the train tracks while his mom and grandma waited for us by the car. This was before sundown, and what they call the C-Street district was already rife with bums and loiterers. I was unarmed, except for a few knives. While I wasn't concerned, I would not have left my wife and daughter there alone outside of a vehicle after dark even for the fifteen or twenty minutes it took us to cross the bridge, check out the trains and discuss various manly issues.
In my opinion, this couple was fortunate to come out of the incident with minor injuries. Had the police not had a presence nearby and been able to respond quickly, do you think the thugs would have been content to shove and run?
One of the lessons that is obvious is that these type do not attack looking for a fight. They like overwhelming odds in their favor. I counted six, including the larger person who came in late, threw the man down, and got in a few cheap shots (rather like a mastiff coming in to clean up after the terriers have brought the prey to bay). The DJ may not have done a lot of damage to his attackers, but he didn't quit. Part of the reason for him doing as well as he did was that some left the party rather early, either because they didn't really want to be involved in an assault or because they knew the cops were not far enough away. He would have done better had he been quicker to turn, gotten his girlfriend between his back and the wall, as much to help anchor him and add mass as to protect her. As it was, he was at a disadvantage right from the start.
This was a "territorial" conflict. This pack considers that area, within certain time boundaries, to be their territory. Females that are present in that space and time frame are viewed as potential property. In one sense, the victim is right. It was not a "hate crime", but it does have an undeniable racial component. I seriously doubt the dynamics would have been the same had the victims been of the same race as the attackers.
Speaking of dynamics, an ecosystem, whether woodland, desert, or concrete jungle, changes with the position of the sun. At this moment, in the middle of the day, I would have no concern about my wife driving around the Square by herself or with another woman or two, even getting out and doing a little shopping or visiting one of the restaurants there. I would have no qualms about taking her to supper at a downtown eating place. I'd certainly be paying attention to what was around if we came out at nine o'clock or so, but I would not be worried.
As the good citizens, the taxpayers, and the people who have to get up the next morning head off to bed, the predators begin to poke their heads out of their holes, and some niches become more dangerous places.