Just over ten years ago, New Bedford suffered a hate crime at the Puzzles Nightclub in February of 2006. According to authorities, Jacob Robida went to that local gay bar, armed with a hatchet and a gun and injured three men.
Now, the Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting is bringing back memories from that violent night. Local entrepreneur and proud gay man, Jeff Costa, told necn, "Ten years ago seems like a long time but it's not, it's quite raw for a lot of residents."
Paul Walsh, the former Bristol County District Attorney, said he immediately thought of Puzzles when he heard about the Orlando shooting. After the attack, Robida went on the run until he ultimately killed himself and his girlfriend. In the days leading up to his suicide, Walsh said New Bedford residents were worried "Where was he? Would he go on another rampage?"
Current New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell said there will be a vigil on Tuesday from 6-8 outside of city all to remember the victims in Orlando and reflect on the tragedy. He said after the Puzzles attack "What our community did was the right thing. We came together and talked openly about differences and acceptance."
Costa agreed saying "The best way to move forward from any terrorismt type of tragedy is to recognize you're not alone. That the world stands with you."