Dallas Karaoke Host Wakes Up With Fractured Skull, Broken Jaw But No Memory

Oscar Rodriguez

A popular karaoke host at the Dallas gay bar, the Round Up Saloon, is still suffering the severe after-effects of an apparent late night assault.

Oscar Rodriguez remembers leaving after his shift at the Round Up a little after 2 a.m. on April 14.

But the next thing he can remember is waking up in his car. There was no damage to his vehicle, his ID and cash were still on him, but his phone was missing.

Although he was experiencing an excruciating head ache, he was able to drive to his home in the neighborhood of Oak Lawn, but it soon became apparent he needed serious medical attention.

(screen capture)

His roommate drove him to the hospital where he was diagnosed with a bleeding brain, a fractured skull, a broken jaw and several missing teeth. Surgery was required to wire his jaw shut and insert metal plates in his head.

Rodriguez’s friend and co-worker, Nikkii Meister, told WFAA News, “The doctors at Parkland (Hospital) said whoever did this intended for him to not walk away from it.”

The 32-year-old karaoke host says he’s still experiencing serious memory loss.

“My memory was all over the place,” he told WFAA. “I couldn’t remember what year it was, I couldn’t remember my birthdate.”

With no memory of the assault, and no leads to go on, police have made no arrests in the case.

Additionally, Rodriguez has no health insurance, so the bills are mounting up quickly. With his jaw wired shut for several more weeks, he can’t work as a karaoke host without being able to talk.

A GoFundMe campaign has been launched to help defray the costs of his medical treatment.

(Source: WFAA)

Suspect Arrested In Salt Lake City Gay Bashing

A victim of a homophobic attack recorded his own assault in an 8-second video that’s gone viral.
Suspected gay basher in Salt Lake City assault (screen capture)

A man caught on video sucker-punching a gay man in Salt Lake City last weekend has been arrested.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that 22-year-old Carlo Alazo was charged Friday by the Salt Lake County district attorney with three misdemeanors – one for threatening to use a weapon in a fight and two for assault.

An 8-second video that captured Alazo appearing to punch the victim, Sal Trejo, was posted to

Twitter and went viral.

The incident occurred this past weekend around 1:30 a.m. Sunday morning in downtown Salt Lake City in front of a bar.

The brief video begins with Alazo asking Trejo if he was gay.

“Are you gay, though?” Alazo asks on the video.

Trejo responded, “Oh, yes, I am.”

“Oh, then you’re gay,” Alazo replied.

According to Trejo, he began to reply, “Yeah, but you called me a [faggot],” but gets sucker punched before he could finish the sentence.

“He just messed with the wrong queers,” Trejo told The Salt Lake Tribune. “We knew that we would be able to find him because we have the resources and we have the support of the great community here in Salt Lake City.”

Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski, the city’s first openly gay major, reached out to Trejo shortly after the attack.

And State Sen. Derek Kitchen, Utah’s only openly gay legislator, shared the video on Twitter writing at the time, “It’s time for the UT Legislature to act on hate crimes legislation.”

Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill says he won’t be attaching hate crime enhancements because he believes it would be “nearly impossible for me to prove that intent” under Utah’s hate crime statute. Gill called the laws as written “unworkable.”

“I would have to show that the person involved in criminal behavior had the intent to deny a constitutionally protected right,” Gill added, such as free speech or religious expression, which doesn’t apply in this case. “It’s so burdensome, we don’t even go to it.”

Utah’s hate crime laws apparently have never been utilized successfully in court.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that a state Senate committee passed a bill this week that would strengthen the existing hate crimes law.

Salt Lake City Gay Bashing Recorded By Victim

A victim of a homophobic attack recorded his own assault in an 8-second video that’s gone viral.
Suspected gay basher in Salt Lake City assault (screen capture)

A victim of a homophobic attack recorded his own assault in an 8-second video that’s gone viral.

The incident occurred in Salt Lake City, Utah, this weekend around 1:30 a.m. Sunday morning.

The video, shared by Sal Trejo on his Twitter account, begins with an unidentified man asking Trejo if he was gay.

“Are you gay, though?” the man asks on the video.

Trejo responded, “Oh, yes, I am.”

“Oh, then you’re gay,” the man replied.

According to Trejo, he started to reply, “Yeah, but you called me a [faggot],” but gets sucker punched before he could finish the sentence.

Watch the video below.

Trejo also posted a written statement which read:

My friends and I were assaulted by an intoxicated man last night as we left a bar in downtown SLC. It started with him approaching us out of the blue and making homophobic and misogynistic comments towards our group. We started recording him and asked him to leave, he wouldn’t, and then went on to hit me and shove one of our girlfriends. At this point we became verbally aggressive to protect ourselves. We called the police immediately. He then pulled out a knife and pointed it towards us while continuing to call us faggots. He eventually ran off, got into his car (in his intoxicated state) and drove on the light rail tracks until he sped off away from Main Street. This man is dangerous and needs to be held accountable for his actions. He drives what looked like a 2007 BMX X5. If you know who he is, please let me know so we may alert the police.

Trejo notes in his Twitter feed that Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski had contacted him on Sunday about the attack. Biskupski is the city’s first openly LGBT mayor.

State Sen. Derek Kitchen, Utah’s only openly gay legislator, also shared the video on Twitter and wrote, “It’s time for the UT Legislature to act on hate crimes legislation.”

According to the Salt Lake Tribune, state lawmakers have dragged their feet on enacting tougher hate crime laws.

Salt Lake City Police shared the video along with the request that anyone with pertinent information call 801-799-3000 and reference case 19-28822.

Two Men Arrested In Connection To Alleged Attack On EMPIRE Star Jussie Smollett

The Chicago Police Department has announced the arrests of two men in connection to the alleged homophobic attack on Empire star Jussie Smollett.
Jussie Smollett

The Chicago Police Department has announced the arrests of two men in connection to the alleged homophobic attack on Empire star Jussie Smollett.

According to CNN, the men are the same that were previously identified in surveillance video as “persons of interest.”

Tom Ahern, Chicago Police communications deputy director, told the press that the men are being viewed as “potential suspects,” but have not been charged at this time.

The men were taken into custody for questioning Wednesday night at O’Hare Airport as they returned from a trip to Nigeria.

One of the men previously pleaded guilty to aggravated battery in 2012, and was sentenced to 2 years of probation, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Earlier today, CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said detectives “had probable cause that they may have been involved in an alleged crime.” Guglielmi didn’t specify what the alleged crime might have been.

“Interrogations will resume today with the two individuals and their attorney,” Guglielmi said in his statement. “While we haven’t found any video documenting the alleged attack, there is also no evidence to say that this is a hoax.”

Smollett told the authorities that on January 29, he was attacked by two men who assaulted him, put a noose around his neck and poured an undetermined liquid on him. According to Smollett, the men used homophobic and racial slurs during the attack as well as yelling, “This is MAGA country!”

On Thursday, the CPD shared they had identified the two men, reportedly brothers from Nigeria, using surveillance cameras, public transportation records and corroborating info provided by Smollett.

Chicago news station CBS2 reports police raided the home of the two men finding bleach, shoes, electronics and more.

According to their lawyer, Gloria Schmidt, the men know Smollett as at least one of them has reportedly worked as an extra on Empire.

“They do know Jussie,” she told CBS2. “They have worked with him on Empire. My preliminary investigations show that on set it’s very tight. They’re all very cordial with each other, so they’re baffled why they are people of interest.”

There were conflicting press reports Thursday night as some outlets claimed the Chicago Police Department was looking into whether Smollett staged the attack himself and falsely reported the crime.

Among the theories was that Smollett might have faked the assault to raise his profile as his character on Empire was to be written off the series.

But Guglielmi announced via Twitter that media reports alleging the attack was a “hoax” were “unconfirmed by case detectives.”

The police spokesman added that media sources regarding the attack are “uninformed and inaccurate.”

Additionally, 20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment released the following statement regarding the reports:

“The idea that Jussie Smollett has been, or would be, written off of EMPIRE is patently ridiculous. He remains a core player on this very successful series and we continue to stand behind him.”

Conflicting Reports In The Media Regarding Alleged Assault On Jussie Smollett

There's rampant confusion in the media tonight as I'm seeing conflicting reports regarding the alleged attack on Empire star, Jussie Smollett.
Jussie Smollett on ‘Good Morning America’

There’s rampant confusion in the media tonight as I’m seeing conflicting reports regarding the alleged attack on Empire star, Jussie Smollett.

Chicago police confirmed that they are talking to two persons of interest in connection with the alleged attack.

Local news station ABC7 Eyewitness News reports police are investigating whether Smollett and the two men staged the attack allegedly because Smollett was being written off of Empire.

In a statement released Thursday, police said they identified the two people in surveillance photos and tracked them down using cameras, public transportation records and corroborating info provided by Smollett.

CBS2 reports police raided the home of the two men finding bleach, shoes, electronics and more.

And, according to CBS2, the men know Smollett as they’ve reportedly worked as extras on Empire. That information came from their attorney, Gloria Schmidt.

“They do know Jussie,” she told CBS2. “They have worked with him on Empire. My preliminary investigations show that on set it’s very tight. They’re all very cordial with each other, so they’re baffled why they are people of interest.”

However…

As these reports began to circulate, Chief communications officer for the CPD, Anthony Guglielmi, tweeted that media reports alleging the attack was hoax are “unconfirmed by case detectives.”

Guglielmi added that media sources regarding the attack are “uninformed and inaccurate.”

Additionally, 20th Century Fox Television and Fox Entertainment released the following statement regarding the reports:

“The idea that Jussie Smollett has been, or would be, written off of EMPIRE is patently ridiculous. He remains a core player on this very successful series and we continue to stand behind him.”

I don’t know what is or isn’t true here, so I’m just reporting what I’m seeing.

Jussie Smollett Speaks To GMA About Alleged Late Night Attack

‘Empire’ star Jussie Smollett speaks to GMA about alleged gay bashing

In his first interview since he told police he had been the victim of a late night attack in Chicago, actor/singer Jussie Smollett says he’s disappointed some doubt his story.

“I have to acknowledge the lies, and the hate,” the Empire star told Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts. “And it feels like if I had said it was a Muslim, or a Mexican, or someone black, I feel like the doubters would have supported me much more – a lot more.”

“And that says a lot about the place that we are in our country right now,” he added.

Police continue to investigate the suspected hate crime that Smollett says happened on January 29 around 2 a.m. as he left a Subway restaurant.

The 36-year-old actor says two men yelled homophobic and racial slurs to get his attention, then put a noose made out of white rope around his neck, poured a liquid on him Smollett says was bleach, and then beat him. Smollett says the men yelled, “This is MAGA country” during the attack.

He was later treated for bruised ribs and injuries to his clavicle bone at a hospital.

Smollett says he thought if he told the truth, then, “That’s it – that’s the truth.” But, then as he began to hear doubters, he came to feel, ”Oh, it’s not necessarily that you don’t believe that this is the truth, you don’t even want to see the truth.”

“For me, the main thing was the idea that I somehow switched up my story, you know? And that somehow maybe I added a little extra trinket, you know, of the MAGA thing,” Smollett told Roberts. “I didn’t need to add anything like that. They called me a fag, they called me a n*gg*r. There’s no which way you cut it. I don’t need some MAGA hat as the cherry on top of some racist sundae.”

He explains he didn’t immediately call the police out of a sense of pride, saying, “We live in a society where, as a gay man, you are considered – somehow – to be weak, and I’m not weak. And we, as a people, are not weak.”

When asked why he thought he was targeted, Smollett surmises it’s because, “I come really really hard against 45. I come really really hard against his administration.”

Smollett says he believes the image of two people found on surveillance cameras by the police are his attackers, saying “I don’t have any doubt in my mind that that’s them – never did.”

And moving forward, he says he “will never be the man that this did not happen to. I am forever changed.”

And Smollett has a message for the LGBTQ community. “I want a little gay boy, who might watch this to see that I fought back.”

“Learn to fight; learn to be a fighter,” he continued. “I’m not advocating violence, at all. If you are going to die, fight until you do. Cause if you don’t fight, you have no chance.”

Shortly after Smollett’s interview aired, Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi tweeted that authorities have found the persons of interest captured on surveillance cameras around the time of the alleged attack and they are being questioned.

Guglielmi emphasized the two are “not considered suspects at this time as they are currently being questioned by detectives.”

He added, “We remain in communication with the alleged victim.”

Austin: Four Men Arrested In Late Night Gay Bashing

Spencer Deehring and Tristan Perry

Four men have been arrested in connection with the brutal homophobic attack in downtown Austin last month that sent the two victims to the hospital.

According to NBC affiliate KXAN, the four suspects are:

• Frank Macias
• Miguel Macias
• Kolby Monnell
• Quinn O’Connor

All four face two counts of second-degree felony assault.

According to KXAN, a second-degree aggravated assault charge, if convicted, could result in a prison sentence of two to 20 years. If a hate crime finding was successfully proven on top of that, the sentencing range would increase to five to 99 years in prison.

Officials say social media played a part in identifying some of the suspects by matching physical descriptions as well as tattoos, as well as surveillance footage from nearby buildings.

Frank Macias, Quinn O’Connor, Miguel Macias, Kolby Monnell (l-r)

Additionally, a few days after the attack was reported, the police received a crime stoppers tip naming Frank Macias and another individual.

The victims, Spencer Deehring and Tristan Perry, told police they were walking down the street holding hands when a man called them a homophobic slur. When they asked what he had said, the man began calling them ‘faggots’ and called previously-unseen men who joined in the attack.

The four reportedly followed the couple taunting them with homophobic slurs.

When Perry attempted to verbally defend himself, he says he was punched by a muscular man with long, blond hair. Falling to the ground, the four joined in punching and kicking him.

When Deehring tried to defend Perry, they turned on him as well.

The attack ended when a passerby happened to see the assault.

Both men were transported to a hospital to be treated for serious injuries.

Deehring positively identified Macias in a police lineup. And according to reports, Macias then implicated his brother and the two other men.

Twitter Trolls Kevin Hart For Sending Jussie Smollett ‘Prayers’ After Homophobic Assault

Kevin Hart (L), Jussie Smollett (R)

In the aftermath of a homophobic, racist attack on Empire star Jussie Smollett, an outpouring of love and support for the openly gay actor came flooding across social media.

As I reported earlier this week, Smollett was assaulted in the early hours of January 29 when two attackers physically accosted him, poured bleach on his head and put a noose around his neck, all while calling him homophobic slurs.

The incident is now being investigated by police as a possible hate crime.

Celebrities and activists of all stripes reached out to send ‘best wishes’ and thoughts for a speedy recovery after the attack.

But when comedian Kevin Hart offered his ‘prayers’ via Instagram, social media was not having it.

In addition to said prayers, Hart wrote:

“This is unbelievably sad. Why are we going backwards….this is disgusting. We as people have to do better. WTF is going on the world???? Why are we falling in love with hate???? God damn it people….Choose love…I repeat…Choose love. I will forever choose love and I will continue to teach my kids how to do the same. Stand strong brother”

You’ll recall Hart recently had to step down from hosting this year’s Oscars after homophobic tweets and jokes resurfaced from his past.

The man who took forever to give a direct apology for joking that he would break a doll house over his son’s head if he thought he might be gay is now wondering, “Why are we going backwards?”

Uh-uh, the Twitter people do not have short memories when it comes to seems like hypocrisy here.

Here’s just a sample of the responses Hart got to his ‘prayers:’

Hart responded this afternoon via tweet:

Texas: Gay Couple Hospitalized After Late Night Hate Crime In Austin

Tristan Perry (L) and Spencer Deehring (R)

A gay couple was attacked in an apparent hate crime early Saturday morning in Austin, Texas.

Tristan Perry and Spencer Deehring were walking to their car around 2:45am after celebrating a friend’s birthday at Rain nightclub in downtown Austin.

The couple passed a man on the street who called them a homophobic slur. They told local news station KXAN they believe it was because they had been holding hands.

Deehring says he responded to the slur by saying something along the lines of “I’m sorry, I couldn’t hear you.”

At that point, Deehring says the man called out to his group of friends who were previously unseen. The mob began to follow the couple as they headed to their car.

The group began “yelling every expletive you can think of,” says Deehring, who told them, “I don’t have anything more to say to you guys, we’re just going home, leave us alone.”

And that’s when Perry was punched in the face suffering a broken nose and falling to the ground. While down, another in the group kicked Perry in the back of his head.

Deehring attempted to defend his boyfriend by tackling the men, but was knocked unconscious after being punched by members of the mob.

A bystander walking by may have saved their lives as the attackers fled upon being seen. The bystander called 911 and waited with the men until police and an ambulance arrived. Both men were hospitalized.

Perry was treated for a cut on the back of his head, a broken nose, chipped teeth, and multiple bruises. He continues to experience memory lapses.

Deehring suffered several lacerations, bruises to the back of his neck and head, and swelling to his jaw and mouth.

The president of the Austin chapter of PFLAG, Anna Nguyen, told KXAN that while she has seen violence targeting LGBTQ people in Austin in the past, “It feels as if lately the frequency has ratched up quite a bit.”

“I think Austin as a community needs to step up its game and prove it’s one of the most LGBTQIA-friendly cities in the country by deed, and not just by words,” she added.

Statistics released last November by the FBI show an increase of LGBT-related hate crimes in Texas when comparing data from 2016 to 2017.

The couple has launched a GoFundMe campaign to help defray the medical costs.

On the GoFundMe page, after explaining the attack that landed them in the hospital, they write:

Today I ask for your help with the burden we have been given of medical expenses related to this experience. Both of us were transported in an ambulance and given emergency trauma care at a local hospital. Due to this we expect our bills to exceed the thousands of dollars due to receiving comprehensive radiological care. And we ask for your love and support during our difficult time. Any help you can give is immensely appreciated. Always spread love and positivity. End hate.

They also shared their story on Facebook wanting people to realize attacks like this can happen to anyone.

Additionally, as a result of sharing the news of the attack, Deehring came out to his family and loved ones.

Grateful for the support they’ve received since the attack, the couple say they have a message for others.

“Spread love, end all this hatred, end all this closed-mindedness always watch your surroundings, always be aware of your surroundings, don’t walk alone,” says Perry.

And Deehring adds, “Be aware of your surroundings, but don’t change who you are as a person, don’t ever change who you are as a person and don’t be afraid to go out there and explore the world, just as you are.”

Watch the report from KXAN below:

Homophobic NYC Subway Attacker Arrested For Harassment & Assault As A Hate Crime

Allah Allasheed

Earlier this week, I reported on the violent homophobic attack on a New York subway train that left a young woman with a fractured spine.

According to The New York Daily News, the alleged perpetrator has been apprehended and charged with aggravated harassment and assault as a hate crime.

Allah Allasheed, 54, faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

The assault occurred on November 20 aboard an E train in Queens.

The victim, a 20-year-old college student, tells the Daily News her friend “gave me a kiss on the cheek while she was making a Snapchat.”

That somehow triggered Allasheed, who flew into a rage, as he started screaming at the two young women.

“Don’t do that gay shit in front of me!,” he yelled as he threatened the victims. “Do that one more time and watch what happens!”

The two students say they stood up to put some distance between themselves and the man, and that’s when he jumped up and ran towards them.

“I knew he was going to hit me,” the victim told The Daily News. “He punched me in the back. I turned around and before I could even defend myself …. he threw me back. My head hit the pole and my back hit the ground.”

Allasheed apparently managed to escape when the train stopped at the next stop.

Hospitalized with a C7 vertebrae fracture near the base of her neck, the victim also suffered torn elbow ligaments trying to catch herself as she fell.

Treated at Elmhurst Hospital, she returned to school for end of semester exams. Nearly a month after the violent assault, she still wears a neck brace.

Allasheed was captured by the New York Police Department Hate Crime Task Force. According to reports, he confessed to the attack and the use of hate speech.

“I stood up and told her kiss her again you dyke and watch what happens,” he allegedly told authorities, according to the Daily News. “I pushed the girl, she turned around and then she fell.”

The victim told the Daily News she is, of course, relieved the assailant has been arrested and charged. She also doesn’t want the incident to change her.

“Bad things happen, but good things happen all the time,” she said. “Hopefully I can move on from it.”