Spencer Deehring and Tristan Perry, a gay couple in Austin, Texas, were attacked while leaving a nightclub in the early hours of Saturday morning, targeted because they were holding hands.
Deehring told KXAN that they were attacked near 7th Street and Red River Street by a man who had called them a homophobic slur and the man’s friends.
Said Deehring: “They started following behind us pretty closely yelling every expletive you can think of. The last thing I said to one of the guys before they attacked both of us was like, ‘I don’t have anything more to say to you guys, we’re just going home, leave us alone.'”
Deehring was beaten unconscious and Perry had his nose broken and was kicked hard in the back of the head. Both were hospitalized after a bystander called 911.
The couple launched a GoFundMe campaign to pay for their medical expenses.
Wrote the couple on their GoFundMe page: ‘On Friday evening into early Saturday morning my boyfriend and I were victims of a hate crime. We were called “faggots” and brutally kicked & beaten. I suffered a concussion and severe lacerations, my boyfriend suffered a broken nose, stitches in his forehead and a major concussion with minor internal bleeding. Fortunately when a bystander saw what happened they were able to call 911 and we were able to get transported to a local medical center. Today I ask for your help with the burden we have been given of medical expenses related to this experience. Both of us were transported in an ambulance and given emergency trauma care at a local hospital. Due to this we expect our bills to exceed the thousands of dollars due to receiving comprehensive radiological care. And we ask for your love and support during our difficult time. Any help you can give is immensely appreciated. Always spread love and positivity. End hate.’
Said Deehring to KXAN: “Be aware of your surroundings, but don’t change who you are as a person, don’t ever change who you are as a person and don’t be afraid to go out there and explore the world, just as you are. We’re gonna do that too.”
Watch KXAN’s report: