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04/19/2007


Three Men Charged with Hate Crime Assault in Attack on Texas Gay Man

Three suspects arrested for the beating last month of Reno, TX gay man Burke Burnett have been charged, the Dallas Voice reports:

BurnettThe victim, 26-year-old Burke Burnett, said he was notified by the Lamar County District Attorney’s Office on Thursday, Nov. 10 that his attackers will face hate crimes enhancements in the case. The Paris News reported on its website Thursday that a Lamar County grand jury indicted the suspects on three counts each of aggravated assault with hate crimes enhancements. Two of the three suspects will also face enhancements as repeat offenders.

Aggravated assault is a second-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison, but the hate crimes enhancements would bump up the charges, making them first-degree felonies punishable by up to life in prison.

Burnett's attackers stabbed him with a broken beer bottle before throwing him onto a fire. His attackers hurled ugly anti-gay slurs as they beat him.


Thomas Roberts Interviews Burke Burnett, Target of Last Week's Brutal Anti-Gay Hate Crime in Texas: VIDEO

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Today, Thomas Roberts spoke with Burke Burnett who was stabbed, beaten and burned in a vicious anti-gay attack in Reno, Texas last week. Burnett talked about the attack and the women who jumped in and helped save his life.

Three suspects are now in custody.

Watch Roberts' interview with Burnett, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Thomas Roberts Interviews Burke Burnett, Target of Last Week's Brutal Anti-Gay Hate Crime in Texas: VIDEO" »


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

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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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Continue reading "Texas Man Burke Burnett Speaks Out About Vicious Anti-Gay Attack: VIDEO" »


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