A social media campaign has urged the District Attorney in Corinth to investigate a possible hate crime after a gay man was brutally beaten at a Mississippi Walmart.
Corinth Police Chief Ralph Dance, 26, told WTVA that 23-year-old James David Scott assaulted 26-year-old Devin Norman in a Walmart parking lot at around 1 p.m. on Friday.
The confrontation occurred over a Facebook post that Dance called “apparently sexual in nature.”
According to Norman, Scott beat him because of his sexual orientation. Reports said that Scott had called him a “faggot” during the incident.
“I think that it’s a travesty that there’s an entire segment of abuse that’s just swept under the rug,” Norman explained. “Yes, his assault was aggravated but it’s entirely something else. Entirely. It was simply because of who I love.”
Sources close to Norman told WMC that he had threatened to “out” Scott with private text messages and photos that the two men had shared with each other.
But Norman insisted that he no longer had the photos.
“I was bluffing, hoping that he would back away from me because his body language was so threatening, and violence scares me,” he recalled.
Scott was charged with simple assault. Police later said that the charges would be upgraded to aggravated assault on Monday.
Norman has called on police to charge Scott with a hate crime, but officials indicated that they did not think that the evidence supported that charge.
A social media campaign launched on Sunday asked people to contact District Attorney Trent Kelly to urge him to pursue hate crime charges. And a petition on the White House website asked the president to “force” the DA to classify the attack as a hate crime.
“This story is heartbreaking in its absolute stupidity, and because I know there are echos of my own past in it,” one Reddit user noted. “I’ve seen this kind of hate before. I was perceived as being weird, and I often received taunts of ‘faggot,’ and “n*ggerlover,” because I had black friends and stood up against racism, and dared to care about recycling.”
IfYouOnlyNews.com pointed out that Mississippi had no law protecting LGBT people against hate crimes. But Scott could be charged under federal hate crime laws.
Watch the video below from WMC, broadcast March 23, 2015.
Chief Justice Roberts admonishes lawyers at Senate impeachment trial
Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court John Roberts made his first major intervention in President Donald Trump's impeachment trial shortly before 1 a.m. Wednesday morning.
After House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-CA) finished his closing arguments on why former National Security Advisor John Bolton should testify, the White House team went on the attack. Yelling and demanding apologies, the president's team was more animated than they'd been all night. Roberts then admonished the House and White House on their language.
Claiming the Senate is the "world's greatest deliberative body" -- despite what he had witnessed during 12 hours of the impeachment trial -- Roberts complained about language that was "not conducive to civil discourse."
White House lawyers begin yelling at Democrats during late-night impeachment trial — after Trump starts tweeting
President Donald Trump woke up and began tweeting around midnight EST during the Senate impeachment trial over the amendments over the rules. That's when a noticeable thing changed on the Senate floor: Trump's team started yelling.
Nearing 1 a.m. EST Tuesday morning while the president was tweeting about impeachment, his team began attacking Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY) personally. They called him a liar and accused him of attacking the president and demanded an apology. After nearly 12 hours this was the first time the White House got even remotely animated after a dull defense of the president.
Here is the self-inflicted blunder Mitch McConnell made that destroyed his entire case: ex-DOJ official
The former chief of the criminal fraud section at the Department of Justice broke down a mistake made by Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) late on Tuesday evening.
McConnell urged something known as "vote stacking" in which there would be a vote-a-rama sequence of vote after vote -- without any debate on the amendments.
Andrew Weissmann, who played a management role in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation, explained how McConnell undermined his own argument.
"I think Mitch McConnell may have made a bit of a miscalculation there because what he is really saying -- 'Can you stack these?' -- is it doesn't matter what you say, because we're going to vote against it," he explained.