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Back to Section One | Back to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, February 10, 2012 - Volume 40 Issue 06
Brandon White speaks out
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Brandon White speaks out

by Shaun Knittel - SGN Associate Editor Brandon White, the young Gay man attacked and beaten amidst a hail of anti-Gay slurs outside a southwest Atlanta, Georgia, neighborhood last Saturday, bravely spoke out February 8 about the ordeal.

White, 20, was leaving a convenience store on February 4 when the assault occurred. His attackers kicked and punched White to the ground while yelling anti-Gay slurs, recorded the incident, and posted a video online. The unidentified men are allegedly part of a local gang called 'Pittsburg Jack City,' named for the neighborhood in which they reside.

At a February 8 press conference, White said he wasn't going to call the police after his attack, but then he learned a video of his beating was posted online and had gone viral.

'At first I was embarrassed,' he said. 'But if they are willing to put it out there, I'm going to face it.'

'I feel that I was very violated. I thought that & if a straight person could walk to the store and not have a problem I should be able to do the same thing,' said White. 'I shouldn't have to worry about whether or not I should have to look over my shoulder or if this person is going to attack me or that person is going attack me for just being a Gay male.'

Before the attack, White said he never felt unsafe in his neighborhood, but felt he should come forward now that the public was aware of this violent act.

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed has offered a $10,000 reward for anyone who provides information leading to the arrest of the alleged attackers. Atlanta City Councilmember Cleta Winslow said she would donate $1,000 toward the award.

No arrests have been made, but the FBI is working with Atlanta police to track down the three suspects seen in the video.

White said he thought the attack was Gay-bashing and deserved federal hate crime charges, which are being considered.

'It's clearly stated in the video why they did it,' he said. 'I just want to see justice done.'

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