A gay couple from Everman refused a rental space for their wedding reception last week had their property vandalized last night. Ben Allen and Justin Ryan Hudgins found “Burn FAG” spray-painted in black across their fence.
The couple lives in Everman, a town in Tarrant County located southeast of I-35W and I-20, less than 10 miles from Downtown Fort Worth.
Allen said it happened sometime after 7 p.m. last night. Everman police were called and promised extra patrols in the neighborhood for the next month.
The couple has been together eight years and bought the house two years ago. They haven’t had trouble in the past. Hudgins’s mother lives four blocks up the street. The daughter of the town’s mayor lives on their block.
After police took the report, Allen said they covered the graffiti with a blanket because there’s an elementary school across the street.
Allen said after he posted a Dallas Voice article about All Occasion Party Place refusing to rent them its facility because they are a same-sex couple on his Facebook page, a relative of the family that owns the venue began writing homophobic rants on his page.
“Good for them!!! Take your ass to San Fransisco. With the rest of the Californicators!!!!” wrote Cody Smith Sr.
“No I’m not a homosexual!! I’m not a pole smoking, queer!!!” he also posted on Allen’s page.
Allen said he was terrified when he saw the graffiti.
“I don’t know how people would have gotten our address,” he said.
In previous news accounts in Dallas Voice and elsewhere, they were described as a Fort Worth couple. But he said he didn’t plan to keep quiet about the attack or the bigotry of the owners of All Occasions Party Place.
Allen said the response from the Everman police was excellent and said it helped that the city had an openly gay officer. He said he hoped the police would look into any connection between the vandalism of their property and the facility.
After the couple marries at a resort near Cancun in April, they still plan to have a local reception. Same-sex marriage has been legal in the state of Quintana Roo where Cancun is located since 2011.
Allen was contacted by someone from an Arlington hotel who read about their story in Dallas Voice and is trying to put together an extremely affordable reception for them.