Texas Woman, 71, Arrested for Anti-Gay Hate Assault with Cane

A 71-year-old woman was arrested and charged with a hate crime for using her cane in an anti-gay attack on a man, the Star-Telegram reports:

DerbyWanda Derby attacked the 25-year-old man Wednesday night as her son was moving into the man's apartment, Richland Hills police said.

"This apparently angered Derby," Richland Hills Detective Tye Bell said in a news release.

Derby referred to the man with a homosexual slur and told authorities that the man "has AIDS and is going to kill her son," according to the news release. Derby, who was arrested Wednesday, was free Thursday afternoon on $11,500 bail, according to Tarrant County criminal court records. She is charged with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, enhanced as a hate crime, and assault causing bodily injury.

…Derby is accused of hitting the man, who was not identified, several times with a cane and choking him by placing the cane against his throat. The man's mother saw the attack and went to help. As she called 911, she was hit in the face, Richland Hills police said. The man had marks and bruises on his throat and body and was treated at the scene, police said.

Derby's Facebook page is littered with angry rants about her neighbors, including this one about her son.


UPDATE: Derby's victim is speaking out. Check out his interview HERE.


  1. MarkUs says

    If she’s 71 and her son’s companion was 25, how old is her son and what was he doing living at home. Weirdness. Anyway it’s nice to see a 71 year old meemaw not afraid of the new social media :-).

  2. candideinnc says

    This situation exemplifies the damage done to families by religion. Organizations like the Mormons and Catholic Church say they promote love, but their bigotry does nothing but tear families apart. This woman is pathetic.

  3. Sean says

    Admittedly I don’t use Facebook, but I have no ability to understand why anyone would feel the need to broadcast the details of their personal lives, especially when it comes to a situation like this one. I find that almost as deranged as the physical attack.

  4. DanSwon says

    Aren’t stories like this a bit of an abuse of hate crime laws? Yeah she’s an angry stupid old bat but this is about her son and someone she doesn’t want him to be with (because it seems she already hates him as a neighbour). I just think this kind of situation is a bit of an insult to people who suffer genuine serious assaults in other parts of America where there is no hate crime enhancement to the charge. And i don’t think gay slurs shouted in the heat of the moment equate to a crime that was purely motivated by homophobia.

  5. mary says

    Sounds to me like this “mom from hell” has had serious issues with her son for some time and used the gay issue as an excuse for venting her rage. This goes beyond homphobia. She’s seriously evil and needs to be locked up. And yes, a mother announcing on Facebook that she’s disowning her son is truly weird. I hope the man she assaulted will be OK.

  6. Gigi says

    @DANSWON – And the swinging of her cane that caused bruising to two people don’t count as a crime either? Her attack was fueled by hate for gay people. How is this not a hate crime?

  7. MarkUs says

    “Admittedly I don’t use Facebook, but I have no ability to understand why anyone would feel the need to broadcast the details of their personal lives, especially when it comes to a situation like this one.”

    Sean, I know a nurse at the hospital I work at who learned her son (who lives in the same city) had gotten married by reading his Facebook. Unbelievable. And she said it like she was saying she had read on his page he had bought a new car. All within earshot just stood with their mouths open.

  8. Francis says

    Very sad, sounds like an extremely distressing ordeal. I agree with what everyone said, if this is the “family values” social conservative and religious bigots are all talking about than I sure am glad I am *supposedly* lacking in it. Hopefully the son and his boyfriend just hang in there because, ultimately, together they will be so much better off.

  9. Brian says

    The most shocking part of this story for me is that, according to her facebook page, she worked for the Red Cross. I just can’t picture her helping out hurricane victims.

  10. mak136 says

    It’s amazing that her facebook is public…the crap she posts and gosh..nice work experience…what the heck is she being allowed to work at the Red Cross and such places?!

    A hate spewing trash idiot.

  11. Lynn Childers says

    I would like to clear some things up about this situation. I am the sister of the young man that this happened to. First, he is not a couple with her son by any means. The reason her son moved in with my mom is because Wanda kicked him out and he needed a place to stay. We have known him for over 10 years, but only met her a few months ago. My brother did no wrong and did not deserve any of this. My family accepts his choice and always will.

  12. TampaZeke says

    HELP! I’m being oppressed for expressing my Christian faith!

    Get ready for this kind, loving, gentle grandmother to be the next poster victim for the Religious Oppression industry. NOM needs a diversion and they can’t be too choosy right now. Besides, by the time Brian Brown and Maggie Gallagher get finished with this story Grandma will look like a defenseless invalid who was set upon by a mob of rabid, foaming at the mouth, Christian hating homosexuals.

  13. Mykelb says

    Whomever her son is, he is free of this old baggage with nothing to offer him but hatred, division, and annoyance. Good riddance you hateful old bigot.

  14. TampaZeke says

    @ANON, “defend himself”? Can you imagine how differently this story would have been reported had he lifted one finger to defend himself against a 71 year old WOMAN with a cane? Men are already pilloried, and ARRESTED, when they try to defend themselves against violent attacks from young, able bodied women.

  15. Mic says

    “…My family accepts his choice and always will…”

    Well how verrrrrrrry country of you to spill your religious clap-trap “its a choice” b.s.

    The only choicne he is making is staying in ‘your mom’s’ house.

    Sorry to shake your holy timbers but baby…whether you like it or not…

    …No matter WHAT the snake-handler in your little churchy place tells you, We’re BORN this way.

  16. gregory brown says

    Texas again. It HAS to be the water.

    @jackfkntwist: where’d you get that tee shirt? Is it a commercial product or did you make a one-off? I’d like to have one–pref in navy, to show off my blue eyes.

  17. Mark says

    Surely one of the Faux News sheeple who just sits at home all day on disability being fed 24/7 that minorities, gays, and Obama are trying to destroy our country.

  18. Rick says

    This has got to be one of the most pathetic stories I have ever read and the comments, with a few exceptions like Mark’s comment above, just make it even more pathetic.

    Reality check, people: A 71-YEAR-OLD WOMAN is being accused of a crime for “attacking” a 25-YEAR-OLD MAN?!!!! And you think she should be?!!!!

    Are you kidding me?

    OK, she is a bigot, but, good God, her views are just the norm for people in her age group, so that should be taken into account.

    That aside, though, are you telling me that a 25-year-old man is such a wuss that he could not simply grab the cane and take it away from the woman and let that be the end of it, rather than actually filing charges?!!!

    Almost anyone reading about this is going to form a negative impression of gay men or have their existing negative impressions reinforced, of us being weak little cowardly sissies and/or petty, bitchy queens for the behavior displayed.


  19. Mark says

    This is why we get gay bashed. We just stand there and take it.

    Rip the cane out of her hand and break it.

    If she comes at you and tries to hit you you push her away.

    If she keeps coming at you you body slam her.

    If she still keeps coming you plant the bottom of your foot in her chest.

    Man the f-k up

  20. Steerpike says

    Mean, senile, old ladies have the right to whack anybody they like. They’ve earned it. What sort of man, gay or otherwise, is going to admit that a 71 year old lady had a chance of doing him any serious damage? I’d be annoyed but I wouldn’t bother with the law.

  21. Steerpike says

    This is not ‘extremely distressing’. This is a sad, nutty old bat who doesn’t value her adult child’s decisions. He should welcome the chance to get away with her. calling this a hate-crime is pretty much an insult to all those people who get put in hospital with horrible injuries or even killed by homophobes. There are some ‘ordeals’ that should simply be shrugged off. This culture of victimhood is getting too much: are we going to run crying to a lawyer every time ANYTHING unpleasant happens to us. This doesn not mean I condone systematic bullying, abuse or even proper assault. But this is none of those. This just makes the ‘victim’ look weak and silly. I bet heteropsexual men are constantly getting whacked about for no particular reason and most of them would be ashamed to admit that a 71 year old lady got one over one them, let along go to the cops with it. Man up and forget about it.

  22. says

    So I’m wondering what happens to the old lady when the neighbor gets a restraining order and she can’t be within 500 feet of him…

    I don’t care what happens, particularly… Just wondering. She deserves exactly what she gets, as does anyone who resorts to violence to solve a disagreement.

    I’m a little surprised to hear so many suggesting the young man should have just beat the crap out of her and be done with it… REALLY?? You think he should beat up his new boyfriend’s mother in FRONT of her son? Yeah, that would have made everything SO much better…

    I think the young man did the CHRISTIAN thing (respecting an elder who deserves absolutely no respect whatsoever)… And good for him! This old dirtbag is gonna have to live with her new-found fame. The boys will get over it.

    She will be queen of the cell block if they toss her away. And they really should. Apparently no gay man within cane’s distance of her is safe…

  23. unokhan says

    “I’m sorry but how did a 25 year old male get taken down by a 71 year old woman(?)… With a cane.”

    exactly. the whole ‘story’has an element of we’ve-fallen-through-the-looking-glass about it. smh.

  24. FunMe says

    LYNN CHILDERS: great you accept you brother, but remember it is NOT a “choice”. Educate yourself that your brother is who he is because he was born that way. PERIOD.

    It’s a sexual orientation, NOT a choice!

  25. Ninong says

    It was the young man’s mother who dialed 911. That’s why the crazy woman struck her, too. According to the story, the police arrested the crazy woman and charged her with a hate crime based on her own account of what happened and why. They didn’t need to rely on the explanation given by the young man and his mother. The crazy woman was proud of what she did and apparently she expected the police to give her a high five.

    What a hateful old loon. According to her Facebook page she “Loves Jesus” but hates Obamacare and Obama and all Democrats. However, she’s a good Christian woman who loves two of her sons but the one who’s moving in “with the idiots nextdoor doesn’t matter at all.” Nice to tell the whole world you hate your son.

  26. thom says

    …I would like to be charitable and say that she is likley to sufffer from severe depression brought on daily by having to look at that face everyday in a mirror, but I can’t. I’m quite sure her “faith” allowed her violent behavior. Troll.

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