Metro Weekly

Man rejected on Grindr threatens to ‘wipe out’ gay community in Tampa

Ralph Perkins is accused of making threats to commit a mass shooting

grindr, gay, tampa

Ralph Perkins – Photo: Tampa Police.

A 50-year-old Florida man frustrated from rejections he received on Grindr has been arrested after allegedly threatening to attack the LGBTQ community in Tampa and then kill himself.

Ralph Perkins, 50, was arrested on Wednesday and charged with making a written threat to conduct a mass shooting.

Perkins made the threats earlier this week after his offer for an unidentified person to move in with him was rejected, according to the arrest report.

Tampa police claim Perkins sent the following message from his phone: “I like to take a gun I like to wipe the whole gay community out in Tampa and then kill myself,” and “That’s going to be my ultimate present to Tampa, Florida, is the annihilator (sic) the gay community before I kill myself.”

“Perkins did not have any known immediate access to firearms and no weapons were confiscated during the arrest,” Eddy Durkin, a spokesperson for the Tampa police said in an email to the Tampa Bay Times, which first reported on the arrest.

Perkins told a witness that he was depressed and has been suffering from stomach cancer.

Perkins has previously been arrested for failing to properly register as a sex offender — stemming from a 2004 arrest in Alabama — and for giving false information to law enforcement. 

Perkins appeared in court for a preliminary hearing on Thursday before 13th Circuit Court Judge Cheryl Thomas, according to court records.

Thomas found probable cause that Perkins threatened to commit a mass shooting.

He has been assigned a public defender and is currently being held without bail at the Hillsborough County jail.

Related:

Anti-gay college professor and church elder accused of soliciting men on Grindr

Two Texas men plead guilty to hate crime for using Grindr to assault gay men

Grindr is operating like the Trump administration, ex-employee says

Read more:

Federal court orders Pentagon to turn over documents behind transgender military ban

Buttigieg draws fire from other Democrats in PBS debate

Elizabeth Warren pledges to honor transgender victims, reinstate protections as president

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!

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

Leave a Comment:

Like What You're Reading?

Get Metro Weekly's Daily Email