A suspect was busted Tuesday in the string of attacks on a Hell’s Kitchen gay bar — and allegedly told cops he was just “exacting revenge” on behalf of a gal pal feuding with the club, police said.
Sean Kuilan, 34, was charged with reckless endangerment and criminal mischief in the brick-hurling attacks on VERS bar, including a caught-on-video incident Saturday night, NYPD Chief of Detectives James Essig said.
“Basically, what he says [is] he knows a girl who had a problem with one of the guys in the bar and he was ‘exacting revenge,’” Essig said. “As of right now we don’t have any reason to believe it is [a hate crime].”
Kuilan is being charged with only three of four recent attacks at the bar because cops don’t have video surveillance of one of the incidents, Essig said.
“I’m gay myself,” Kuilan said as he was led out of a police vehicle and escorted into court in handcuffs on Tuesday evening.
Asked why he threw the bricks, he answered, “Something personal.”
The suspect, who is nicknamed “Paper Kid,” is known in the neighborhood and was tracked down thanks to tips to the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers hotline, the chief added.
Kuilan was arrested by the department’s warrant squad, and was also sought on a warrant in a menacing case from Sept. 2, 2021, the chief said.
Sources said he pulled a knife on the victim in that case and threatened, “Are you okay with dying?”
Police said he is now charged with targeting the bar three times, including throwing bricks at the front window on Nov. 13, and shortly after that again on Nov. 15.
Police on Monday released photos and video of the latest incident, on Nov. 19, showing the suspect approaching the bar around 10 p.m. and hurling a rock while patrons were sitting behind the glass before running off.
The customers were not injured, thanks to the shatterproof pane installed by owner David DeParolesa — who said it was a precaution against anti-gay attacks.
DeParolesa said it was the fourth time the bar has been targeted by “unnerving” attacks.
“I am really happy that the case is moving forward and that the detectives on the case have been diligent and that there’s progress,” DeParolesa told The Post on Tuesday. “I really do hope it’s just this one person and that we can close the book — I’m uncertain it is.”
He added that the police presence in the area is now “a night and day difference” compared to just last week.
“There is a full, coordinated effort and lots of visibility,” DeParolesa said. “Even since then, there was a Zoom meeting with local gay bar owners and the precinct closest to us that was intended to help increase communication between us.”
The Saturday attack came on the same night that five people were gunned down and more were wounded in a mass shooting at a Colorado Springs LGBTQ nightclub.
VERS was opened earlier this year, and DeParolesa said the attacks won’t stop him from opening the bar at 5 p.m. Sunday “like always.”
Additional reporting by Ben Kesslen