Gay man severely beaten with pool cue in apparent hate crime at Shreveport bar

John Skaggs sustained sustained multiple fractures to his face.

Just up the road in Shreveport, La., a 52-year-old gay man was severely beaten with a pool cue in a possible hate crime at a downtown bar, according to KLSA 12. The victim, John Skaggs, is recovering at home after being hospitalized with several fractures to his face. The suspect, William Payne, is charged with attempted second-degree murder in the unprovoked attack, which was caught on surveillance videotape:

“He’s going to have some pretty serious reconstructive surgery, broken jaw, and broken bone that holds his eye socket,” said the manager and owner of the Sandbar, Tim Huck. …

“It was totally 100 percent a hate crime for this sexual orientation,” said Huck.

The bar provided police with video surveillance. Huck says it’s disturbing, and shows Payne who is a large man, breaking the cue stick over Skaggs’ face with one powerful blow.

Shreveport police believe that the video will be powerful evidence of the alleged attack, and management at the Sandbar believes it will also help distinguish between a crime and a hate crime.

“At no point in time had he talked to the man that attacked him, bumped him. After watching the video and from witnesses they hadn’t even made any form of eye contact or anything,” said Huck.

Huck considers Skaggs a friend, and says he can’t understand why someone would want to hurt him.

“Literally just enjoying a drink, in here four or five times a week, and never bothers anyone,” said Huck.

Via Joe.My.God.

—  John Wright

Charges dismissed in alleged attack on gay teen in Kentucky

Associated Press

MCKEE, Ky. — A judge has dismissed charges against two eastern Kentucky teens accused of attacking a gay classmate.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports prosecutor George T. Hays said Thursday, Aug. 19 that there wasn’t enough evidence to convict Corinne Schwab and Ashley Sams, both 18. They were charged with fourth-degree assault and menacing in the alleged attack on 18-year-old Cheyenne Williams.

Earlier this week, District Judge Henria Bailey-Lewis acquitted a juvenile who also was charged in the case.

Williams had accused the others of taking her to a rural area of the county on April 16, hitting her with sticks and threatening to push her over a cliff because she is gay.

The four teens attended Jackson County High School at the time of the alleged attack and had been friends.

—  John Wright