Shuck and Jive

Friday, August 22, 2008

Possible Hate Crime in Johnson City

UPDATE: Here is a video interview with one of the assault victims.

This is in today's Johnson City Press:

Two Johnson City men assaulted outside a local gay bar early Wednesday morning are characterizing the incident as a hate crime and say they are stepping forward to try and stop what they see as a worsening climate toward homosexuals.

Matt Widner and Johnathan Smith also say they want to be sure the police pursue the case against their two assailants vigorously, and that with a license tag number, vehicle description and physical descriptions that shouldn't be too hard.

“Until they're caught, it's not going to be left alone,” Smith said Thursday. (Read More)

Report a hate crime
at Tennessee Equality Project.

Anti-Violence Project provides a toll-free hotline.


  1. Holy crap, I am ashamed of this shit. What can I do to help these guys?

  2. We definitely need to have PFLAG Tri-Cities make a public statement, and the group should also follow-up with the police to make sure this gets pursued.

  3. I hate this, too, John. I even made a Youtube video about this subject

  4. It makes my blood run cold to hear of this situation. I admire the courage these two men have demonstrated by following through with the police, knowing their names would be made public, something I was not able to do when I was that age and assaulted in a gay bar. My heart goes out to them.