TX Police Arrest Two Of Burke Burnett’s Attackers But Won’t File Hate-Crime Charges

Reno, Texas Police Chief Jeff W. Sugg announced the arrest of Daniel Martin and James “Tray” Mitchell Lasiter, two of the four men accused of punching, stabbing and setting 27-year-old Burke Burnett on fire. But the police won’t file hate crime charges even though Burnett’s attackers allegedly called him a “pussy-ass faggot” and a “cocksucking punk.”

Martin and Lasiter have been charged with “aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, causing serious bodily injury”, a first-degree felony that could snag them five to 99 years in prison. However, the police will probably not file hate crime charges because Texas’ hate crime law does nothing to enhance the punishments of a first-degree felony‚ it merely adds an extra burden of proof on prosecutors during trial.

The investigation is ongoing.

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #burkeburnett #danielmartin #gaybashings stories and more


  • Zack

    So glad living in Texas is a memory, not a reality!

  • the crustybastard

    1. Reduce hate crime statistics by never categorizing a hate crime as one.
    2. Claim “problem solved!”
    3. Pat self on back.

  • calvin hay

    When I hear that I feel so lucky I live in Canada. One night me and my boyfriend were assaulted (A very isolated incident in Canada)And the police could not have done a better job making sure justice was served. Our attacker was charged with a hate crime and everything

  • SteveBmke

    It is time the gay community arms itself. Milwaukee became concealed-carry yesterday.
    This fag is going to be armed at all times. Too many Right Wing, Republican,
    “Christian”, haters in this world and I for one will not stand by and let a fellow
    fag be brutalized. Those dumb breeders would have been shot in the legs in 2 seconds after the bottle hit the kid in the back. They are welcome to come to Milwaukee!

  • Queer Supremacist

    @SteveBmke: Are you crazy? Violence never solved anything. Except the issue of how to respond to the tyranny of King George III towards the American Colonies, the illegal and immoral slave economy of the South, and the unmitigated evil of Adolf Hitler and the Axis powers.

    In all seriousness, welcome to Queerty. I am prepared to kill any breeder who would dare attack me in the most brutal manner imaginable. I think we would all do well to heed the words of Teddy Roosevelt when he said, “Speak softly and carry a big stick.”

    We should also remember that the Second Amendment states, “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.”

    We cannot depend on the police; they are staffed with the enemy from top to bottom in every city in America.

    We cannot depend on the state; they created this decision.

    We have been foolish to make allies of anti-gun nuts. I have long realized that an oppressed minority must take the law into its own hands in order to survive. A disarmed population is at the mercy of the state and anyone else who would dare attack us. Had the Nazis not disarmed the German people, there would have been a lot fewer concentration camps and I would have a lot more relatives today.

    Never throw the first punch. Always throw the last punch.

  • Hyhybt

    That a hate crime charge does nothing but make prosecution more difficult is bizarre, but if true it does explain very well why they wouldn’t file it that way.



    Please CALL the Mayor of Reno and let him know we will not stand by when a hate crime happens and is not persecuted as one! Call and email your Senators and anyone else you can… Below is the Governor, Senators, White house and the mayor of Reno, Tx!


    Web Site: http://www.governor.state.tx.us
    E-mail: Contact Via ‘Web Form.’
    PO Box 12428
    Austin, TX 78711-2428
    Phone: (512) 463-2000
    Fax: (512) 463-1849

    Honorable Buddy Heuberger, Mayor
    City Hall
    160 Blackburn Street
    Reno, TX 75462-7152
    Phone: 903-785-6581

  • chris

    @Queer Supremacist: This fag is always armed, but Im also a cop, in Texas. There are lots of us actually. Not that I disagree with you about concealed weapons, just slow your roll with the “all cops are the enemy” rant. In fact, before you fly off the handle at the local cops here, it may help to know that the ultimate decision in what the charges will be belongs to the District Attorney of whatever county they are in, Lamar County, I think. They are the ones you should be emailing and calling.

  • chris

    @Queer Supremacist:You may also be interested in going to Lamar county judicial website and getting an idea of who exactly this Mr. Burnett may be. If he is the 27 yr old listed, he has quite an extensive background, theft, forgery, DWI, Marijuana, criminal mischief, and assaulting a public servant. It is possible that there is more to the story than meets the eye here. It’s entirely possible that all the phone calls and emails are in defense of a guy who is as big a homophobe as the guys who attacked him.

Comments are closed.