Sign language mistaken for gang talk

May 3, 2011 at 10:06 AM

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla., May 3 (UPI) -- Police said two hearing impaired men talking to each other in sign language were mistaken for gang members and stabbed at a South Florida nightclub.

Sean Shuland, 33, and Alfred Stewart, 31, were exchanging signs when a fellow club patron thought they were members of a gang and flashed gang signs at them, WFOR, Miami, reported.

When the men failed to respond, Barbara Lee, 45, left the club and returned with two youths, police said.

Police said a fight ensued and the hearing impaired men were taken to a local hospital suffering from stab wounds.

There was no information on their condition.

The club's security guard had his hand and head sliced with the sharp end of a broken champagne bottle.

Lee and Marco Ibanez, 18, were charged with aggravated battery.

A juvenile suspect was also detained, police said.

The incident occurred Saturday night.

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