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Watch: Austin Police Arrest Four Suspects in Vicious Attack on Gay Couple

by Kilian Melloy
Wednesday Feb 13, 2019
Frank Macias
Frank Macias  (Source:Austin Police Department)

Police in Austin, Texas, have announced that they have four suspects in custody in connection with a brutal homophobic assault on a gay couple that left both men unconscious on the street and sent them to the hospital.

CBS Austin reports that suspects Frank Macias, Miguel Macias, Quinn O'Conner, and Kolby Monel have all been detained as suspects in the Jan. 19 attack, which unfolded in downtown Austin after Tristian Perry and his partner Spencer Deehring left a birthday celebration at a gay bar.

As reported previously at EDGE, the couple had left the bar at about 2:30 am and were holding hands as they walked home. They related how a man began harassing them and calling them "faggots." According to Deehring, the man then signaled "four or five others," at which point the group of attackers beat and kicked the two men.

In a social media post, Perry described how one of the assailants "punched me in my face breaking my nose then when i fell to the ground they continued to kick me in the back of the head until i went unconscious."

Deehring said that he saw the kick to the head that left Perry unconscious, and told the media that he was "fairly certain that that kick had just killed him." Nonetheless, Deehring rushed into the fray in an attempt to protect Perry and was also assaulted and left unconscious.

The CBS Austen article reported that the attack continued until another individual, described as a witness, showed up.

The police used surveillance video in their investigation, CBS Austen reported, and also received a tip implicating two of the suspects.

Patch Downtown Austin reported on the suspects' arrests, noting that the attack has been acknowledged by Austen police as a hate crime. Patch also reported that each of the four suspects faces two counts of second degree aggravated assault. Bail for each of them has been set at the same amount: $300,000.

The Austin Police department was not shy about touting the arrest and speaking out on the subject of hate crimes.

CBS Austin quoted Assistant Chief Ely Eyes as saying, "If there is one segment of our community that's being targeted by a group of suspects out there then it makes all segments of our community much more vulnerable."

The private sector also did their part, media outlets reported. The Austin Chronicle also reported on the arrests, recalling that downtown businesses, including two gay bars, had contributed to a reward for information leading to the arrest of the perpetrators. The amount the businesses raised came to $13,000.

Watch the CBS Austin report below.

Kilian Melloy serves as EDGE Media Network's Assistant Arts Editor. He also reviews theater for WBUR. His professional memberships include the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association, the Boston Online Film Critics Association, The Gay and Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association, and the Boston Theater Critics Association's Elliot Norton Awards Committee.


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