TN Man Says He Was Attacked At High-School Reunion For Being Gay


At his 20th annual high-school reunion over the weekend, Shawn Farris of Franklin County, Tennessee, says he was assaulted because he’s gay.


But the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office says they have no plans to investigate the incident—which they’ve classified as simple assault—as a hate crime.

Farris, who is a flight attendant, started the group the “Flight Attendant Project”  to help at-risk LGBT youth.

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  • w.e.

    I’ve wanted to slap a flight attendant before, but I don’t consider it a hate crime.

  • Kevin

    Maybe this could be a tad more believable if he wasn’t such an obvious drama queen. They can’t make hate crime charges with one man’s word versus another man’s word. No witness(es)? No evidence? No hate crime.

  • Cam

    @Kevin: said…

    “No witness(es)? No evidence? No hate crime.”

    Actually he said that it DID happen in front of witnesses.

  • Jonathonz

    @Kevin: Is he a drama queen because he was crying about being beat up which many people would do? Or is he a drama queen because he’s effeminate? People that come down on gay guys for “acting gay” are homophobic, Kevin, plain and simple.

  • Jonathonz

    It’s interesting that the Sheriff decided that this is definitely not a hate crime when it wasn’t observed by any police officers. Isn’t that sort of thing decided in a court of law. I’m just guessing here but it sounds as if the Sheriff has decided that Shawn probably deserved to be assaulted because of his demeanor. I can just hear them snickering behind closed doors now.

  • Kevin

    @Jonathonz: Funny that you associate “acting gay” with being effeminate yet I’m the homophobe? Hmmm….

  • Kevin

    @Cam: Actually, he has witnesses to a fight happening. He was obviously in some type of altercation; that’s not in question. Just from this clip, doesn’t seem like anyone else heard this conversation where the F-bomb was repeatedly used, so the onus is on him to prove that his being gay motivated the attack. Without witnesses to that, all I see is a drama queen–who thinks but doesn’t know he was profiled for being gay–giving the performance of his life while getting a nice, free plug for his little organization. If I had this case, I would eat him alive! Looks like he crumbles easy.

  • sheena

    @Kevin: OHHHH another STRAIGHT ACTING gay man…..JJJEEESSSSUUUUSSSS PLLLEEASSSEE are we having straight acting homosexual apocalypse soon i get my gun ready now!!!

  • RomanHans

    Dear Queerty,

    You need some sort of system where your readers can click thumbs-down on comments, and after a certain number of readers vote it down, the comment is deleted. Nobody with a brain is going to tackle the mess of idiots here.


  • Chris

    @RomanHans: How can I “thumbs up” your comment?

  • Law

    During the video Shawn? (I’m horrible with remembering names) stated the guy who beat him up said ‘Mind you’re own business’. Without hearing the other point of view(s) involved, and strictly basing my opinion based on what I heard in this video, it doesn’t sound like a hate crime. It sounds like the victim stuck his nose where it didn’t belong and got smoked for it. I think he was more upset that he couldn’t hold his own in the fight.

  • Kevin

    @sheena: Can you translate to English please? Thanks.

  • Cam

    @Kevin: said..

    “Actually, he has witnesses to a fight happening. He was obviously in some type of altercation; that’s not in question. Just from this clip, doesn’t seem like anyone else heard this conversation where the F-bomb was repeatedly used, so the onus is on him to prove that his being gay motivated the attack”

    No, all that was said is that it happened in front of witnesses.

    You keep saying that there were no witnesses, but the guy stated that the guy called him the names and then hit him and then said basically thank god it happened in front of witnesses because who knows what would have happened.

    Why do you keep insisting that there are no witnesses? You seem to not like the guy , but I don’t get the changing of facts.

  • Kev C

    Summer is here. Hatred against gays is rising. Everyone should take extra caution when out in areas where they may encounter homophobes.

  • sheena

    @Kevin: bitch if you cant understand that simple sentence then your just not straight acting closeted gay queen but also ILLITERATE lol

  • HeroQueero

    This man was assaulted, plain and simple, by a homophobic bully. It doesn’t matter what the act is labeled. It’s still an attack on another human being for being different and those responsible should face justice.

  • What the f**k

    @Kevin: You’re NO lawyer…..You’re just another TROLL making up stories ….”I’d eat him alive”…..BITCH PLEASE!I swear these bitches make up careers to mask the fact that no one will employ them!

  • Kevin

    @Cam: Again, all he has are witnesses to a fight taking place. You can look at his face and tell he clearly lost a fight. Aside from is word against the other guy’s, where’s the proof that the attack was motivated by him being gay? I’m not denying that a fight happened, never did.

  • Kevin

    @What the f**k: @sheena: It seems I’ve upset both of you quite a bit……….that is all. =)

  • What the f**k

    @Kevin: No Kevin you haven’t upset me……but suggesting that you’re a lawyer is plain ridiculous .You know it….we all know it.We also know that it.’s HIGHLY unlikely that he was out there looking to fight .He may have called someone on their attitude to someone else… and a beating was the result.Since we don’t have a comprehensive breakdown of what occurred we can only surmise.Only someone deaf and blind wouldn’t instantly “profile” the man as being gay.And since there ARE witnesses they either will or won’t back his story.It seems from Your comments that you have a problem with effete gay men….and I am honour bound to serve you on it.

  • Kevin

    Clearly I have though. Expletives are a sign of too much emotion or a simple mind. Even a paralegal could see that if this video is the whole story this guy is offering, any newbie lawyer who needs an easy win would have a field day dragging this guy all over the court room. Bet he’d be in tears after Q’ing asks his name and address. I have no problems with “effete” men, but this guy has two fists just like the other guy. All I see is two men that got into a scuffle at a high school reunion, and that seems to be all this guy has any proof of anyway. Oh well.

  • What the f**k

    @Kevin: Still with the law thing…..oh dear! Kevin…..I know REAL lawyers….top of their game lawyers…..and your blurb is not convincing …and neither are your opinions.The perception you have is not born out by the story presented here.I ‘m going to ignore the slurs and let you hang yourself with your own bullshit.

  • Kevin

    @What the f**k: Still with the expletives. You must still be upset. Now you’re separating thoughts with ellipses? Do you know that’s a tell-tale sign of someone who should’ve never made it through to 9th grade? I’ve already seen you endlessly bickering with other members over nothing, so I know it’s never-ending with you. So tell you what, I’m just going to conclude that you’re simply simple-minded. And I’m sure you do know plenty of court-appointed attorneys. ;-)

  • What the f**k

    @Kevin: This from the person who’s all over this post…..first post 9.00am…..so far 8.49pm…..

  • Kevin

    @What the f**k: I have to admit, I would’ve never guessed you could tell time, but what does that have to do with the story? Oh right, absolutely nothing.

  • What the f**k

    @Kevin: Update : 9.58pm

  • JayUVA

    Sounds like the assailant said something like: “Mind your own business, f***t” – then commenced with the punching and throwing to the ground and possible fracturing of wrist. The attacks that made the news as hate crimes seem to be where the assailants call the victims out as “f***t” to identify them and repeat the derogatory terms during the attack. Maybe just the way the assailant used the term “f***t” is why the sheriff was disinclined to consider it a hate-based crime. Just as well really because hate-crime cases are hard to win; if a jury fails to convict on the hate-crime charge, they could just as well acquit on other charges. (For ex: the student shooting in Calif couple yrs ago – jury rejected the hate-crime charge and deadlocked on the murder charge – mistrial. 2nd attempt to prosecute, the DA dropped the hate-crime charge, and the shooter plead guilty, didn’t get life in prison but did get 20-some yrs before parole.)

  • xamthor

    no one “deserves” to get beat up because they “act gay” or effeminate….
    an attack on one of us is an attack on all of us.

    Sheriff’s dept. :

  • Bill W

    Apparently the guy who did the punching is 73 with a bad heart and one knee.

    Besides, he was called out at 1:00am to pick up a guy too drunk to drive.

    Homophobes usually aren’t good Samaritans.

  • EastCoastMan

    @ Kevin…whats the matter? can’t stand fem gays attaining rights? You seem upset that so many gays are batting for fem gays. You’re a homophobe and should stop being a coward and own your homophobia. Just own it dude. lol, but I must say, camping out on a gay site all to denounce homophobia is amusing. Step out of that closet boo boo. It’s getting pretty tight in there.

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