A WOMAN has told of the horrific moment she was kicked in the face while trying to defend a pal from homophobic attackers.
Kayleigh Reid was with her friend Parker Myers in Portsmouth when they were set upon by a gang of thugs.
They had spent the night in Hampshire Boulevard and were approached by three men while they were standing outside.
The pair were subjected to homophobic abuse and had food thrown at them, before the trio launched a brutal attack that left Kayleigh with a fractured eye socket. Parker suffered a cut lip.
Mum Kayleigh, 28, said: ‘I was talking to my friend when three boys started chucking food at him.
‘They were doing it for a while so I turned around and approached them.
‘It probably didn’t help that I had been drinking but I was not going to let them say horrible stuff.’
Admin assistant Kayleigh described how two of the men started attacking Parker and threw him to the floor.
She said: ‘It was disgusting. I saw my friend on the floor and I saw one of the boys running to kick him like he was taking a penalty kick.
‘I ran towards him and my instinct was to jump on top of my friend and wrap my arms around his head to stop them kicking it.
‘I don’t know what came over me. You hear about these injuries all the time where one kick could kill somebody.’
Reacting bravely, Kayleigh, 28, took a kick to her face before the three men ran away.
The pair then found police officers patrolling the area before they were later treated at hospital.
Kayleigh, a regular visitor to the gay nightclub, said it was the first time she had witnessed any trouble on a night out.
She added: ‘I found HB one of the safest places to go.
‘There are people in a similar situation to Parker.
‘It’s so diverse so you never have any trouble.
‘But you do get these people though who are not accepting of others.
‘I think it will be a while before we go out there again – we can go back to the same club but it will always be in the back of our minds.’
PC Daniel McGarrigle, from Hampshire Constabulary, said the police’s LAGLO scheme (Lesbian and Gay Liaison Officer) was being used to encourage people to report hate crime.
He added: ‘Homophobic assaults are very rare in the city, but we would like to reassure members of the public that our LAGLOs are there if people need to speak to someone.’