Police are hunting for three people wanted over an assault at a transgender rights event in Hyde Park – but have refused to give their gender in case they get it wrong.
Maria MacLachlan, 60, was punched in the face and knocked to the ground at Speakers’ Corner on September 23 by suspects including one clutching a ‘trans misogyny is still misogyny’ placard.
The mother-of-two, who describes herself as a ‘gender critical feminist’, was attacked at a ‘gender recognition talk’ in central London last month.
Describing the suspects in the attack, a Scotland Yard spokesman told The Telegraph: ‘We have to be very careful.
‘We are not going to commit ourselves to something because I’m afraid it’s not black and white.’
Ms MacLachlan was filming members of the Action for Trans Health (ATH) group who attacked her and took her memory card.
Police are today hunting for three people wanted over an assault at a transgender rights event in Hyde Park including this suspect clutching a ‘trans misogyny is still misogyny’ placard
Scotland Yard also want to trace these two people and any witnesses to an assault on a 60-year-old woman at a transgender rights event
A hoodie-wearing protester raises a fist during the brawl on September 13 at Speakers’ Corner
Supporters of the trio accused of attacking Ms MacLachlan later said it was acceptable to punch her because she was with Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminists who believe you can only be a woman if you were born one.
Scotland Yard has today released images of the suspects they want to trace.
Suspect one is a white man, around 6ft tall, with brown shoulder-length hair worn in a pony tail.
Mother-of-two Maria MacLachlan, who describes herself as a ‘gender critical feminist’, was punched to the ground at Speakers’ Corner in Hyde Park
Suspect two is described as white, around 5ft 8inches tall of slim build with short blonde hair and wearing a black, grey and white hooded camouflage jacket and multi-coloured leggings.
Suspect three is described as white, around 5ft 7inches tall of slim build with brown chin-length hair with blonde ends and wearing a black, grey and white camouflage hat, a black pullover top and black jeans.
The altercations came as members of the Action for Trans Health (ATH) clashed with their bitter enemies the Trans-Exclusionary Radical Feminists (TERFs) before a scheduled event to discuss gender issues.
Ms MacLachlan had joined around 50 fellow TERFs who were to be given details of the secret location for a talk entitled What Is Gender? The Gender Recognition Act And Beyond.
TERFs believe transgender women should not have the same rights as other women, leading to tension between groups.
Ms MacLachlan said she was talking to one of the event speakers Miranda Yardley when ‘studenty-looking types’ turned up and began arguing.
She said the protestors shouted ‘when the TERFs attack, we fight back’ and she decided to start filming
‘Then suddenly someone tried to grab my camera,’ she said. ‘It was scary. Someone kept trying to get my camera. I think it was a girl, but I couldn’t tell because they had a hoodie over their eyes.’
After the attack ATH’s Edinburgh branch sent a series of tweets defending the use of violence
Writing online she said: ‘I ended up on the ground and it felt like a few of them were punching and kicking me.’
She said she was ‘shaken’ and suffered bruising to her face, red marks on her neck and grazed knees.
Her Lumix camera was smashed and the memory card stolen. She added: ‘I didn’t go to hospital but it has really shaken me up.’
After the attack ATH’s Edinburgh branch sent a series of tweets defending the use of violence.
They said: ‘Punching terfs is the same as punching Nazis. Fascism must be smashed with the greatest violence to ensure our collective liberation from it’.
‘Violence against terfs is always self defence’, another tweet read.
Elsewhere on social media ATH supporters say ‘TERFS must die’ and ‘burn in a fire, TERF’.
Before the meeting, one supporter posted: ‘Any idea where this is happening? I want to f*** some TERFs up, they are no better than fash [fascists].’
Any witnesses or anyone with information that could assist the investigation is asked to call Westminster police on 101 or contact via Twitter @MetCC. To give information anonymously contact Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or online at crimestoppers-uk.org.