A group of Yale students known more for belting out songs than throwing punches was attacked in the early hours of the New Year by uninvited guests who also slung anti-gay slurs at students at a San Francisco house party.
One student’s jaw was broken in two places as a result.
Members of the Baker’s Dozen a cappella singing group were visiting San Francisco as part of their winter tour. The students attended a party hosted by the daughter of Reno Rapagnani, a retired lawyer for the San Francisco Police Department, at his house.
The men had just sung the "Star Spangled Banner," according to the father of one of the singers, when they prepared to leave.
But then, a group of uninvited guests then became hostile, according to Whitney Leigh, lawyer for several of the singers.
One partygoer said, "you're not welcome here," one injured singer, Sharyar Aziz Jr., told the Associated Press. "He called a few members of the group, whether it was fag or homo, very, I would say, juvenile taunting," he added.
Those guests, who were not provoked, Leigh said, then called for back-up.
The singers were leaving the party when they were attacked by 15 to 20 people as they got out of their vehicles. The alleged assailants had been called to the party “with the purpose of attacking these men,” Leigh said.
"They were surrounded, then tripped — and when they were on the ground, they were kicked," the AP reported Rapagnani as saying.
Two other Yale students needed medical treatment following the fight, one for a concussion and the other for cuts and a swollen ankle, AP reported.
Police were called at 12:43 a.m. with reports of there being a fight on the street, said Sgt. Neville Gittens of the San Francisco Police Department. He said when police responded to the scene, people fled the area and four people were detained and identified.
Sharyar Aziz, father of Sharyar Aziz Jr., 18, said his son's jaw was broken in two places.
“The doctors reports suggest his jaw was broken by a blunt instrument or someone well trained as a fighter,” the elder Aziz said.
His son was not unable to comment because his jaw was wired shut after having reconstructive surgery, placing two metal places on his jaw that would stay there forever, his father said.
Besides Aziz Jr.'s jaw being broken, several kids walked away with black eyes and bruises covering their bodies, his father said.
The police were called and broke up the fight and detained four suspected. However, no arrests were made that evening, and have yet to be made more than 10 days after the incident, according to Aziz.
“We’re obviously frustrated that no one has been arrested,” the New York City resident said.
“We hope that justice will be done,” said Dorie Baker, a Yale University spokeswoman. “I think it goes without saying that we’re shocked and dismayed.”
Local news reports speculate that no arrests have been made because the main suspect in the attack is reportedly the son of a prominent local physician.
“I don’t want to speculate as to why [an arrest hasn’t been made.] I do know that in my 20 years as a criminal defense attorney, I don’t recall an incident in which a brutal attack on mutiple people would result with a quick detention and release,” Leigh said.
Rapagnani said he gave his daughter permission to host a party even though they were not there to supervise.
Gittens said the investigators were still interviewing people involved in the incident.
"Four people were detained and identified. When you have 20 people, and you have four people and ID them, there needs to be more work done in terms of finding out what happened,” Gittens said.