Metro Weekly

Texas men who tortured black gay man indicted

Two Corpus Christi men face hate crimes charges for 2012 attack

800px-Giant_Gavel

Photo: Sam Howzit via Wikimedia Commons

Two men from Corpus Christi, Texas, were indicted on Monday on federal hate crime charges for the beating, torture and rape of a gay black man in 2012.

A federal grand jury returned a four-count indictment against Jimmy Garza, Jr., 32, and Ramiro Serrata, Jr., 22, according to a press release from the U.S Department of Justice. The men have been charged with conspiracy to commit hate crimes, a hate crime violation based on race and color, a hate crime violation based on sexual orientation, and using a firearm during the commission of a crime of violence.

Serrata appeared in court on Monday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Jason Libby and has been held without bond. Garza is already in prison on unrelated charges and is scheduled to appear in court on Aug. 24.

According to the indictment, Garza and Serrata lured the victim into an apartment on Mar. 8, 2012 before attacking him. The victim previously told Corpus Christi’s NBC affiliate KRIS 6 News that he had owed the men $5, but they continued to attack him even after he paid back the money. During the attack, which lasted three hours, they called him racial and homophobic epithets, punched him, kicked him and assaulted him with a frying pan, a coffee mug, a belt and a chair. 

Garza and Serrata are also accused of pouring bleach or another household cleaning agent onto the man’s face and eyes, pistol-whipping him with a handgun, and whipping him with a belt. When the victim began to bleed, the men forced him to strip naked and clean up his own blood. The indictment against them also claims they sodomized the victim with a broom, mop or other unknown object as they continued to call him racial and homophobic slurs, and make several other anti-black and anti-gay statements. The victim was eventually able to escape by jumping out of a second-story window. 

If convicted, both Garza and Serrata could face life in prison.

[ninja-inline id=73197]

Support Metro Weekly’s Journalism

These are challenging times for news organizations. And yet it’s crucial we stay active and provide vital resources and information to both our local readers and the world. So won’t you please take a moment and consider supporting Metro Weekly with a membership? For as little as $5 a month, you can help ensure Metro Weekly magazine and MetroWeekly.com remain free, viable resources as we provide the best, most diverse, culturally-resonant LGBTQ coverage in both the D.C. region and around the world. Memberships come with exclusive perks and discounts, your own personal digital delivery of each week’s magazine (and an archive), access to our Member's Lounge when it launches this fall, and exclusive members-only items like Metro Weekly Membership Mugs and Tote Bags! Check out all our membership levels here and please join us today!

John Riley is the local news reporter for Metro Weekly. He can be reached at jriley@metroweekly.com

Leave a Comment:

Support Metro Weekly's

LGBTQ Journalism

For as Little as $1.15 a Week

Like What You're Reading?

Get Metro Weekly's Daily Email