The family of a Mississippi man who was so severely beaten he had to have his jaw wired shut believes he was attacked because his assailants may have believed he was gay.
Trevor Gray, 28, of Waynesboro, Miss., recently moved back to his hometown after living in Jackson for several years. The outgoing and effervescent Gray — who, according to his brother, “may not dress or talk like everyone else from small towns in the South” — reportedly went out to a local bar on Friday night in the hope of making some new friends.
At the bar, Gray met 32-year-old Landon McCaa and 28-year-old Toman Sion Brown. When the bar closed at 2 a.m., McCaa invited the entire bar back to his house, according to Wayne County Sheriff Jody Ashley. Gray attended the after-party by himself.
According to The Clarion Ledger, several people from the bar gathered at McCaa’s house drinking for a couple of hours. People were inside and outside the house, under a carport. Gray excused himself to use the restroom. While he was gone, one of the other attendees objected to Gray’s presence, saying he “was getting on his nerves.”
A video that appears to show McCaa repeatedly punching Gray emerged on social media. In the video, McCaa asks the camera “Are y’all ready?” Gray then walks under the carport, and McCaa asks him, “What’s up, bro?” Gray then smiles and nods his head, at which point he’s punched in the face.
The rest of the video shows Gray getting repeatedly pummeled and punched at least 17 times as he lays motionless. The video ends as a man in an orange shirt approaches.
According to Gray’s brother, Cruz, Brown began beating Trevor after the video cuts off. Cruz Gray claims that Brown allegedly approached his brother and pretended to help him up before beating him. As the beating continued, someone from inside the house reportedly pulled the two men off Gray, who was finally able to escape.
Gray fled to his car, drove himself home, and sat on his couch, slipping in and out of consciousness for hours. He then took a photo of himself and sent it to his brother to explain what happened to him. At his brother’s urging, Trevor Gray eventually agreed to go to the hospital.
Doctors diagnosed Gray with a jaw broken in two places and operated on him before wiring his mouth shut. A CT scan later came back clear, meaning Gray should not suffer any long-term effects from the beating.
A GoFundMe page has since been set up to help Gray pay his medical bills. As of Wednesday morning, the page had raised over $15,000.
Cruz Gray told The Clarion Ledger he believes McCaa “was acting on the incitement of other people [at the party],” as he had no reason to attack his brother.
“[Trevor] has never had a cross word with anybody in this community,” he said. “If you talk to anyone, literally anyone that knows Trevor, this could not have happened to a kinder person, that’s what’s so crazy. He would sacrifice of himself to ensure that his worst enemy doesn’t go without.”