Crime | Lincoln, NE | News

Home Invaders Carve 'Dyke' Into Nebraska Woman's Stomach, Try to Set Her on Fire: VIDEO

(journal star)

Hundreds of people turned out to an impromptu vigil in Lincoln, Nebraska last night after news spread quickly of a horrific hate crime against a woman in her own home which took place early Sunday morning.

Watch a news report from KLKN TV, AFTER THE JUMP...

LincolnThe Journal Star reports:

The woman said she was attacked early that morning by three masked men who barged into her house, bound her wrists and ankles with zip ties, cut her all over her body and carved homophobic slurs into her skin before dumping gasoline on her floor and lighting it with a match, said a friend who spoke to the Journal Star.

The friend said the woman crawled from her house, naked and bleeding and screaming for help before reaching the doorstep of a neighbor's home. Late Sunday, police said they still were investigating the case and had yet to release an account of what they believe happened inside the home.

The City Fire Inspector confirmed that a fire had been started in the woman's house but had failed to spread.

LeavekidsaloneThe Omaha World Herald adds:

[Capt. Jim] Davidsaver said the victim’s description of the suspects was limited because of the masks. When police arrived, the house was still on fire, the captain said. He said it caused about $200 in damage. Davidsaver would not say what words the men carved into the woman’s skin. “We need to maintain the integrity of the case,” he said.

But Erin Thompson of Lincoln, who described herself as the victim’s best friend, said she got a call from her friend about 6:30 Sunday morning. The friend asked Thompson to pick her up from the hospital.

“They carved on me,” Thompson said her friend tearfully told her.

Thompson said three epithets, including the word “dyke,” were carved on the woman’s arms and stomach.

BsementKLKN TV adds:

Friends add the men who assaulted her also spray painted anti-gay words in her basement. Friends say they think this was a hate crime because the woman assaulted is a lesbian.

"When someone takes the time to hand cuff someone with a zip tie and carve derogatory comments or words into somebody else's body, that's sheer hate and at this point, this is a hate crime."

Police say the woman ran to her neighbors house for help. We spoke to the neighbor, who says she also believes this was a hate crime. She also doesn't want her identity revealed to keep the victim anonymous.

VigilA Facebook vigil was announced and had been shared hundreds of times before an event Sunday night attended by hundreds:

The woman's account of the attack drew outrage from a gay and straight-allied community already galvanized by this month's Star City Pride Festival as well as debate over the city's so-called fairness amendment, a proposal to ban discrimination in housing and employment based on a person's sexual orientation or gender identity.

The City Council approved the measure, but petition gatherers recently obtained enough signatures to put the measure up for a public vote. The earliest the amendment will appear on the ballot is November.

A Facebook group has also been formed.

Police are still searching for suspects and have not made any arrests.

LGBT issues have been in the headlines in Lincoln recently with the passage in May of an LGBT anti-discrimination ordinance. Anti-gay activists have gathered enough signatures to put the measure up for a vote in November, with the support of Nebraska's governor Dave Heineman, who says that anti-bias laws against LGBT people should be put up to a popular vote.

Watch a news report from KLKN TV, AFTER THE JUMP...

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  1. Truly awful.

    How do we push-back on politicians who clearly are dodging an issue by suggesting, "...this should be put up for a popular vote."?

    Legislators are elected by popular vote and represent the people when they pass laws that protect people.

    This political strategy by elected official is just the latest way they attempt to preserve their life living at the public trough.

    Posted by: Pete N SFO | Jul 23, 2012 7:25:43 AM

  2. Thank you for posting this story. It is the first place I've seen it. Let's keep an eye on Lincoln's police response to this incident.

    Posted by: james | Jul 23, 2012 7:56:53 AM

  3. This doesn't make me scared, this makes me damned ANGRY.

    Anybody who tries to break into my home and assault me will wish they'd never gotten near my house. There will be no mercy.

    Posted by: johnny | Jul 23, 2012 8:19:21 AM

  4. What an unbelievably tragic story, almost speechless. The fact that this woman was attacked in her own home by these savages makes me angry too, Johnny, very angry, but it also saddens me, that she was not safe in the place she shouldn't have to fear something like this happening to her. I probably shouldn't be at this point, but stories this horrific surprise me in this day and age. I guess it's part of the reality of being LGBT in the Bible Belt. Such a shame.

    Posted by: Francis | Jul 23, 2012 8:46:40 AM

  5. when I read stories like this, I begin to lose hope for humanity... life is so wonderful, the world is so beautiful, why can't people just realize that and let each other's be? the escalation of these events makes me wonder how history will look back at our times, as this certainly feels very much like the beginning of the end, of history unfortunately repeating itself with an updated target... bless this woman and her community....

    was just in Nebraska a few weeks ago, thought the place was lovely..... sigh =-/

    Posted by: V-8 | Jul 23, 2012 8:56:11 AM

  6. Popular vote my ass, this needs to be national news. The country as a whole needs to be shown what the talibangelists brainwashing is doing to American citizens.

    Posted by: Wolf Sawyer | Jul 23, 2012 8:57:33 AM

  7. I hate to be "that guy" but this sounds like a classic fake hate crime. I'll reserve my opinion either way for when everything comes out in the open. Masked men, carving in the stomach, gasoline. She was tied up but somehow managed to crawl to a neighbors house? I'm not sure I'm buying this one. And it's not like others haven't faked things like this before.

    Posted by: Tony | Jul 23, 2012 8:58:36 AM

  8. Adding to that, how do you pour gasoline on someone and then somehow fail when you try to set them on fire?

    Posted by: Tony | Jul 23, 2012 9:00:12 AM

  9. They didn't poor gasoline on her, but her floor. Learn to read.

    Posted by: Steve | Jul 23, 2012 9:03:12 AM

  10. @Tony: Let's find out. I'm willing to run that experiment... on you.

    Posted by: Anastasia Beaverhausen | Jul 23, 2012 9:05:22 AM

  11. Maybe I'm just reading into things, but did anyone else get the feeling that the news station presented this as if it was just a random crime? They mutilated her body for God's sake. It's like they didn't event want to address it. This really needs to go national.

    Posted by: Greggie | Jul 23, 2012 9:11:03 AM

  12. @Steve I did read it, and my point still stands. How do you pour a flammable liquid ANYWHERE and then somehow fail at setting it on fire? It makes no sense. The damage to her was minimal, which is characteristic of fakes. Was she beat up? Does she have a black eye? Of course not. She's not going to punch herself in the face. And good job ignoring the part about her being tied up and still crawling. Why would they not tie her to anything? This story doesn't make sense, and mark my words, give it no more than 2 weeks and we will find out she's full of crap.

    Posted by: Tony | Jul 23, 2012 9:14:39 AM

  13. I agree with Johnny. I do own a gun for that particular purpose, for anyone breaking into my home will be carried out in a body bag.

    Posted by: Bobby | Jul 23, 2012 9:16:27 AM

  14. that I read your latest comment, it makes me think of the woman who threw acid on her own face and then claimed she was attacked. I suppose anything is possible.

    Posted by: Greggie | Jul 23, 2012 9:23:10 AM

  15. We have to contact some of the major news networks and have them report on this tragedy. I'm about to right now. This definitely does need to go national. As for the local reports, the thing that makes me scratch my head is that Lincoln police isn't currently investigating this as a hate crime, although that's what it clearly is. Pressure will need to be kept on them, as we've seen police forces regularly be nonchalant and show no sense of urgency or care regarding anti-gay attacks.

    Posted by: Francis | Jul 23, 2012 9:27:32 AM

  16. Me too I am reserving judgement. Remember that girl in college with the anti gay graffiti on her dorm room door? She did it herself. Remember those tow lesbains, I think it was Colorado,with the spray painted garage door anti gay words? Yeah they did it themselves.

    It is curious that they would spray paint graffiti on her basement walls and not her living room walls don't you think?

    I will reserve judgement pending further investigation. If true, it is horrendous! But we have seen Fake Hate Crimes before so as for me I will wait and see.

    Posted by: StraightGrandmother | Jul 23, 2012 9:33:41 AM

  17. 10 to 1 this is fake and staged. Tony is right, all the hallmarks are there. Is that cynical? Yes. Given what we sadly know about these cases and how this one fits it's also almost certainly true.

    Posted by: William of Ockham | Jul 23, 2012 9:33:46 AM

  18. fake and staged? ur saying she carved into her own body and then crawled out of her house naked to the neighbor's? you people should do this to yourselves and show us just how easy and rewarding it is to fake something like this. no one is fooled by your attempts to cover your bigotry. too bad we can't send you back in time to an era you belong in.

    Posted by: alicia | Jul 23, 2012 9:58:14 AM

  19. Tony has a point. The carving into the skin has featured in at least one fake anti-gay hate crime in the last couple of years. Intuitively it's hard to imagine a perp sitting down and touching his skin to the skin of someone he despises for long enough to carve a word into the skin.

    Posted by: tcw | Jul 23, 2012 10:04:44 AM

  20. Not many points here but I believe a few shill posters on this subject. This is a horrendous hate crime. Charles Manson's gang of loonies carved on his victims before he murdered them too and spray painted on their walls. Must have not happened? My prayers go out to the victim. I hope whoever did this is is given proper punishment for this horrendous attack.

    Posted by: Jeff | Jul 23, 2012 10:58:39 AM

  21. @those who say this was faked or staged: I get a distinct feeling that you guys are somehow either part of the bigotry or maybe...JUST MAYBE part of the problem( or perhaps could be the perpetrators of this heinous crime trying to cast doubt on the whole case) How do we know that you guys didn't do this to her since you all seem to be of this mindset that this person did it to herself?

    Let's clarify some things here first: Just because some one hates gay people doesn't mean that they won't go out of their way to make a statement to the rest of the gay community. I think one of you said something to the effect "Intuitively it's hard to imagine a perp sitting down and touching his skin to the skin of someone he despises for long enough to carve a word into the skin." So I guess this whole Matthew Shepard thing was fake, as well?

    An what would this woman stand to gain by mutilating herself and how would she tie herself up and then be able to hit herself? Seriously??? So, in your opinion, anything that happens to gays and lesbians that is considered a hate crime is just the community faking it all in order to do ...what exactly? OHHHHH...I see! You think that because this one bill is being put to a vote that all the sudden there is going to be this surge in "fake hate crimes" in order to tug at the emotional heart strings of the people...THAT is such an irrational thought and frankly, to be honest QUITE PATHETIC for you to even THINK that way.

    I hope and pray that this never happens to you...but if it does happen to you I'll be sure to tell everyone that you guys faked your own injuries just to garner sympathy for your cause, okay?

    Posted by: Ray Sager | Jul 23, 2012 11:14:04 AM

  22. W/Tony on this one. Why would they spray paint slurs in the basement? Why not the bedroom or living room? I'm not saying this didn't happen as reported, just that somethings with this story just seem beliveable a bit hard to believe.

    Posted by: Hmmmmm... | Jul 23, 2012 11:18:45 AM

  23. Sorry, but Tony does have a point -- it could be a fake. I would wait until all the facts are in until taking a stance. People have done this before and this seems to fit in the pattern of a faked incident. You're all jumping on Tony for jumping to a conclusion but you're doing the same in automatically assuming the allegations in this case are true. People have injured themselves before to get attention or cover up an insurance fraud. I'm not saying she did, but at this point anything is possible.

    Posted by: scott | Jul 23, 2012 11:25:11 AM

  24. It sounds extremely contrived to me. And given
    that there have been many fakes, I am skeptical pending a thorough police investigation. Sick people do anything for attention.

    Posted by: Forrest | Jul 23, 2012 11:27:55 AM

  25. I'm with Tony.

    Ray Sager: We're not part of the problem, but there has been several instances of these types of hate crimes in the past that turned out to be fake. A healthy dose of caution is appropriate until ALL the facts are released.

    What doesn't add up is why she was targeted. Home invasions do happen, but home invasions in which a gay person is targeted begs the questions: Why? How did they know her? They had to have known who she was. They didn't stumble in on her and discovered she was gay. They had to know her.

    And the whole unable-to-light-gasoline-on-fire is questionable.

    This just seems implausible. But maybe I am wrong. We'll find out eventually.

    Posted by: B-rod | Jul 23, 2012 11:36:55 AM

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