Chris Ashcraft, gay man from northern Kentucky, says he was beaten by a group of men outside a Columbus, Ohio, bar on June 6 because of his sexual orientation, reports WCPO.
According to Ashcraft, he was smoking outside the Southbend Tavern in the Merion Village neighborhood when a man approached him asking for assistance with his car at approximately 9:30 p.m.
After the he agreed to help, the 25-year-old says, he was jumped by several men who viciously beat him, leaving him unconscious in an alley behind the bar.
“I was taken by surprise. I don’t really remember much from that point on,” Ashcraft told WCPO. “When I was on the ground they kicked me in the face until I was unconscious. My guess, it was an hour to an hour and a half until I woke up.”
Because the men took Ashcraft’s wallet, Columbus police are currently investigating the attack as a robbery, saying there isn’t enough evidence to classify the incident as a hate crime. Nevertheless, Ashcraft is certain he was targeted because he is gay.
“It was a hate crime,” Ashcraft said. “I was hanging out at a gay bar. It’s Pride Month.”
As yet, no suspects have been named in the case
Watch WCPO’s coverage of the attack here.