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Patrick Read is an NYPD detective who investigates gruesome murders targeting the gay community. He is a character in American Horror Story: NYC primarily portrayed by Russell Tovey. He hides his relationship with reporter Gino Barelli.


Patrick is the third generation of a family in law enforcement, whose father physically and verbally abused him. In 1977, he had a fling with his partner Steve till Mulcahey put an end to it before anything but a kiss was shared.[1]

In 1979, Patrick lies to his wife Barbara about his work and goes to Fire Island for gay parties. Here he meets Billy, a young man with whom he engages in bondage with the owner of the house where they are staying. After Billy accidentally dies during sexual intercourse, Patrick and the host use the services of a hitman called Velvet Touch and an associate to get rid of the corpse by burying it on the beach.[2]


Detective Patrick Read investigates morbid murders targeting gay men. The victims' sexual orientation is an object of ridicule at the precinct, all the more reason why Patrick has not come out of the closet at work. This causes a rift in the relationship with his partner, Gino, just as it caused it with his soon to be ex-wife, Barbara. While Chief Marzara tries to discredit a link between the various victims, Patrick files the report of Adam Carpenter about his missing friend, John Sullivan. The last time he saw him alive they were being chased by a giant with leather hood and harness. Having no way to investigate as he would like, Patrick leaks certain information to his boyfriend so that he can shed some lights on them via articles in The Downtown Native. [3]

Captain Marzara and Detective Mulcahey grill Adam over the interview he gave for the Native accusing the police of carelessness. Patrick who is also present at the interrogation remains on the sidelines, stressing that he did take Adam's report seriously although Sully was only missing for 12 hours. Personal life is no better since Gino was kidnapped and tortured but let go over his US Marine past. However, Detective Mulcahey did not take his statement seriously and Patrick, once again, is torn between his job and his identity as a gay man. Hence he agrees to go with Gino to The Ditch, a leather bar to investigate further. They will also get to experience some of the Patrick's kinks that Barbara spilled to Gino. Another murder is committed in the crowd, and the next morning at work Patrick is confronted with a gruesome crime scene ― six severed hands, each from a different victim dangling in an alley. [4]

At the precinct, Patrick gets another young man reporting a crime. Stewart accuses Sam of imprisoning and raping him for days after answering a phone booth call. When Patrick and a colleague confront Sam, he denies all charges and exposes Patrick's inclinations. Sam's sex dungeon does not seem connected to either the murders he is investigating with Marzara or what happened to Gino. The two lovers grow frustrated and Gino exploits Patrick's inclinations to masochism by goading him to act without permission in an unofficial parallel investigation. Patrick hits the pay phone outside the Ditch where he receives a disturbing phone call after hours of stakeout. He believes he has located the caller but it was just a man who wanted to hookup. Patrick engages in S&M with him, whipping the man. At home, Patrick retrieves a harness from the closet and puts it on. He flexes and poses, alone, and notices a rash developing on his chest. Patrick and Gino rush to the ER when they learn of an arson attack at the Ascension Club and spot the suspect among the injured. Gino and Patrick split up to cover more ground. [5]

The hunt for the suspect turns rescue party when Patrick finds Gino locked inside a refrigerated drawer at the morgue. Another victim is claimed, Hans Henkes but Patrick does not believe it is connected despite Marzara protests. At work, he receives a taunting phone call from the suspect about haunting season at the park. Together with Mulcahey, Patrick goes on a stakeout and is nearly killed by a giant in leather with a ball-and-chain flail. Due to recent secrets coming to light, the murders and two near-death experiences for Gino, the couple is on the verge of breaking up. Patrick admits to anonymous sex, a compulsion he is willing to set aside for Gino. To prove it, Patrick even came out to Marzara at work. During the argument, however, Gino has a heart attack and is hospitalized. [6]

At the meeting to formalize the divorce, Barbara faints and is hospitalized. Patrick, who has offered to look after Barb's dog, is attacked by Big Daddy, the leather giant. When he reports the attack he is ridiculed by colleagues. Barbara insists on staying at the apartment anyway, where she is killed by Big Daddy despite patrol officers outside and Patrick finds the body. [7]

Patrick receives a call from two boys who found a body on Fire Island, and they ask for him because they know he is gay. Patrick argues with Gino and denies accusations of having an affair only to meet up with Sam and go to Fire Island with him. The two dig up the skeleton but are caught in the act by Gino along with Henry, aka 'Velvet Touch'. Patrick is then forced to come clean with Gino―he used to party on Fire Island at Sam's house. A night of sex and drugs led to Billy's death, and they called Henry to dispose of him. Patrick recognizes the bone cuts as identical to those of the Mai Tai Killer's victims and identifies him as Mr. Whitely, Henry's associate whom the hitman and Gino are intent on capturing while Patrick and Sam stay behind.[2]

In 1987, Patrick's health deteriorated to the point where he had to be hospitalized. Abandoned in squalor with other patients in the AIDS ward, Patrick is cared for by Gino. As he is an AIDS patient, the doctor informs him that he is ineligible for a complex operation to repair his retina after he has suffered a detached cornea, resulting in permanent blindness.

In the midst of a crisis, Patrick receives a visit from Barbara in her wedding dress. The ex-wife acts as a psych pomp guiding Patrick through moments of his life scarred by shame and violence. Their first stop is in 1980 when Patrick meets Gino for the first time at a crime scene. Next when in 1977 Patrick shared a kiss with partner Steve after he killed a robber although Patrick had the situation under control; this put blood on Patrick's hands as he rejected Steve's affection in front of Mulcahey. Barbara then led Patrick to the slaughterhouse where Patrick dissected a corpse under Whitely's guidance. The corpse was Patrick's which Barbara describes as a mess of shame and lies. Barbara thus guide him to where the trauma began―Patrick's father teaching him to target shoot. Patrick's failure to hit the target ends in his father shooting a revolver next to his ear, perforating his ear drum.

Patrick dies in Gino's arms, under Barbara's watch, Kathy singing and the ominous Big Daddy. His spirit walks beside Gino to his own funeral.[1]

Personality and Appearance[]



  • Gino and Patrick are the only characters to appear in all episodes of NYC.


Promotional Images


  1. 1.0 1.1 Episode: Requiem 1981 & 1987
  2. 2.0 2.1 Episode: The Body
  3. Episode: Something's Coming
  4. Episode: Thank You For Your Service
  5. Episode: Smoke Signals
  6. Episode: Black Out
  7. Episode: Bad Fortune