Some are questioning how the University of Texas hired two men who were convicted for viciously assaulting a gay man while reading him a Bible verse, the Austin American Statesman reports.
Brothers Darren and Glen Gay were hired by UT to work in positions where they come in constant contact with students, the Statesman reports. Darren was hired as a teaching assistant, which puts him in a supervisory position, while Glen worked as a volunteer research assistant.
In 2004, the Gay brothers and two others were convicted in what police called a hate crime. They tied the victim up with a vacuum cleaner cord, punched him and kicked him, poked him with a sword and sexually assaulted him. During the brothers' sentencing hearing, the victim said Gay quoted the book of Leviticus during the beating and said, "tonight we are passing judgment on you for being a f*ggot and a queer."
*In an email to the Raw Story, a university spokesman said federal law prevents him from discussing individual students.
"[A]nyone who has been convicted of or served prison time time within the previous seven years for certain types of felonies is generally not allowed to work at UT. These felonies include violent crimes, drug crimes and sex crimes," wrote spokesman Gary Susswein.
Darren Gay's name was removed from the school's directory listing him as a teaching assistant after reporters began inquiring about the brothers' employment and criminal history. Susswein said he could not elaborate on the change in status.
Since 2011, the university has conducted criminal background checks on employees. As a volunteer, Glen Gay wouldn't have been subject to a background check because he isn't a university employee, the Statesman reports.
But the case was highly publicized and a Google search reveals their identity.
According to the Statesman, Darren Gay was hired just 10 months after finishing parole for the assault as a teaching assistant for a biochemistry class. Gay is a graduate student at the university and was an undergrad at the time of the assault.
Authorities told the Statesman that the Gays and two other assailants picked the victim up at an Austin dance club called Oilcan Harry's and asked him if he wanted to "go party" with them. The victim invited them to his apartment where the attack took place. He told police that Glen stood on his head to hold him down while the others tied him up.
The judge who handed down Glen Gay's sentence of seven years remarked that she was astonished by his lack of remorse. Glen was a juvenile at that time. Darren received a six-year sentence and served three in prison and the rest on parole.
Darren refused to speak on the record and Glen could not be reached for comment by the Statesman.
"Student safety both inside and outside the classroom is one of our highest priorities," Susswein said. "We have designed employment policies to ensure that safety — and if new information or issues ever arise, we respond quickly and take appropriate action."
*Editor's note: This story has been updated to reflect comments by UT spokesman Gary Susswein.