Last August I reported on a young gay couple victimized by arsonists. Chris Robertson and Paul Day lived in a trailer park outside Orlando and came home to find their place torched and the words “Die Fag” sprayed in paint on their doorstep.
The sad news I have to report today is that one of them actually lit the fire. Chris Robertson confessed to lighting it because he wanted the insurance money, and he used the anti-gay epithet as a “scare tactic” so his partner would want to move from the area. His partner Paul Day had no knowledge of any of this.
Aside from the selfish act of lighting one’s home (and one’s partner’s home) on fire for insurance money, to manipulate whole communities with a false hate crime is more than reprehensible.
Robertson has been charged “with one count of arson, burning to defraud an insurer, two counts of false and fradulent insurance claims and making a false report to a law enforcement officer.” He’s already in jail on an unrelated charge.
Young, Gay, and Hated in Florida [tr]