Darnell “Dynasty” Young, 17, had been given the weapon by his mother after administrators at Arsenal Technical High School did little to stop her son’s bullying. Cornered by classmates, he fired the gun in the air—and was later suspended for his actions.
Sadly, it appears hatred didn’t stop at the classroom door: At his job a the Circle Centre Mall, Young was approached by a man who recognized him from news reports. Khyran R. Delay uttered homophobic slurs at young and then physically assaulted him until a nearby janitor contacted mall police.
According to the Indianapolis Star, Delay claimed Young instigated the incident:
According to court documents, Delay told mall security officers that he recognized Young from news coverage and tried to talk to Young about it. He said Young got in his face and that he pushed Young.
But Young and Donald Richardson, a janitor who witnessed the incident, told police that when Young walked past Delay’s table in the food court, Delay told Young to get away from him and used homophobic slurs. They said Delay pushed Young and then hit him in the face, according to court documents. Richardson radioed for mall security, and Delay, angered that security had been called, approached him. Security officers arrived and detained Delay.
Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department officer Eric Simmons, who investigated the incident, said in court documents that he noticed redness in Young’s left eye where Delay allegedly struck him.
Delay was arrested on a misdemeanor count of battery and will appear in court next week.
Unlike his school, Young’s place of employment has taken his harassment seriously: mall security has offered to escort him to and from work.
At a rally held in his honor Young said the problem is bigger than just him: “We’re not just fighting for me. We’re fighting for other children that lost their lives. We’re fighting for people that’s going through stuff that I’m going through.”