Burke Burnett | Crime | News | Texas

Texas Man Burke Burnett Speaks Out About Vicious Anti-Gay Attack: VIDEO


Burke Burnett has spoken out to KDAF-TV about the attack last weekend in which he was stabbed, beaten, and thrown onto a fire.

BurnettSaid Burnett, his voice breaking: "I'm taking it one day at a time trying to do the next right thing."

Three suspects are now in custody:

Daniel Martin, James Mitchell Laster and Micky Joe Smith are being held on $250,000 bond each.

Reno's mayor William Heuberger calls the attack appalling. He says his sympathy goes to the victim and no one deserves this kind of treatment. The penalties could be increased to include a hate crime. "At the end of the day, the jury will make a finding that it qualifies as a hate crime or if the judge will make that finding", said Burnett’s attorney Dan Haslam.

Burnett says he's concerned about getting well and he'll let the justice system do its job. "I haven't prayed enough about that yet to know exactly what I want done to these people. But it’s not my job to decide what justice for these guys is", he said.

Watch Burnett's interview, AFTER THE JUMP...



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  1. Absolutely, positively awful what Burke has, and still is having to go through. So sad, to see an innocent persons' face in tatters and broken down, solely because he happens to be gay in a conservative area. It's really a shame. I hope he has a strong support system and also everyone should do what they can to send messages to him personally, and let him know a lot of people care for him and his well-being and that he has a lot of support.

    What cannot happen is for this crime not to be elevated to hate crime status. This is a hate crime and the attackers need to be charged accordingly. We as a community have to keep the pressure on and make sure justice is served here.

    Posted by: Francis | Nov 3, 2011 11:16:10 AM

  2. This truly does qualify as a hate crime, in my opinion. I'm especially moved by Burnett's attitude and actions now. For now he's just doing what it takes to return to a healed state of being and letting the justice system do its work. Let's hope that justice system does the right thing.

    Posted by: RBearSAT | Nov 3, 2011 11:44:56 AM

  3. God bless Mr Burnett, who sounds like he has a spiritual practice that has truly taught him, Easy Does it and One Day at a Time. Even Live and Let Live. What a guy. Damn.

    And he's right about the other thing too: it isn't his place to determine what the three attackers need or what corrective to apply. They have to live with the consequences of their choice. It's going to be very uncomfortable for them for a good while, i reckon.

    Posted by: Danny | Nov 3, 2011 11:59:41 AM

  4. The local bubbas are trying to dodge responsibility for simply charging it as a hate crime by pawning it off to the grand jury to decide that. If you'd like to contact the mayor to remind him that the world is watching the backwaters of Reno, Texas, please feel free to do so at:

    William (Buddy) Heuberger, Mayor
    160 Blackburn St
    Reno, TX 75462

    Only ongoing attention and pressure will compel them to do the right thing. This is good old East Texas after all.

    Posted by: Bobby | Nov 3, 2011 12:03:39 PM

  5. Stop praying and start taking action. I'm glad he's received support, but his mythical god isn't the solution. He's his own solution. Fight, fight, and make them pay.

    At least they got $250K bails. Good luck coming up with $25K to get out. (I'll never understand why bail bonds are set at 10% of the amount.)

    Posted by: Paul R | Nov 3, 2011 2:32:49 PM

  6. Paul R tell you what. You deal with this however you want to deal with it but let Burnett deal with these things in his own way. You weren't there and probably didn't have to undergo the ordeal he did so I think that one point says enough for how much your opinion really counts on this one.

    Posted by: RBearSAT | Nov 3, 2011 4:20:54 PM

  7. I hope these three repressed homophobic homosexuals get all their secret fantasies fulfilled in prison. They will each be bitches' to their respective bubbas for sure.

    Posted by: John | Nov 3, 2011 4:27:16 PM

  8. "I'm just trying to do the next right thing."

    It took me a few views to understand that was what he said.

    This tears my heart out.

    Posted by: Caliban | Nov 3, 2011 5:50:58 PM

  9. Sometimes are more difficult than others to remember I'm a pacifist.

    Posted by: DG | Nov 3, 2011 5:55:40 PM

  10. assaults a Mexican a American in the U.S. is joke

    Posted by: emily | Nov 3, 2011 6:17:38 PM

  11. Oookay. Here we go again. Stop clutching your pearls and saying "oh so sad" and listen the F up.





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  14. I have to go with GREG on this one. Learn to fight back!!

    Posted by: JerzeeMike | Nov 7, 2011 1:00:08 PM

  15. greg and jerzee: Please tell me how this guy could physically defend himself when three guys are assaulting him at the same time? How people can be so ignorant, I do not know. Even if he had a gun, you don't know how are where the first blow to him happened and if he dropped the gun, you can bet he'd be dead right now. Please, do the world (or at least this blog) a favor and think fully before you comment.

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