Federal Hate Crime Charges Possible
48-year old Martin Blackwell is in police custody, charged with pouring boiling hot water on a sleeping couple – because they are gay. Marquez Tolbert (photo, above) and Anthony Gooden, both 21, were sleeping in the Atlanta, Georgia home of Gooden's mother when Blackwell, her boyfriend, allegedly attacked them, saying, “Get out of my house with all that gay.”
Caution: Disturbing images below
The two men say they rushed out of the house and knocked on several neighbors' doors before finding anyone to help them. Tolbert required skin grafts from his leg and spent 10 days hospitalized. Gooden was released from the hospital last week, about a month after the February 12 attack.
"The pain doesn't let you sleep. It's just, like, it's excruciating, 24 hours a day, and it doesn't go anywhere,” Marquez Tolbert told WSB-TV. “It doesn't dial down, anything. It's just there."
"I can barely think straight because the burning, the stinging is everywhere,” he added.
"The couple says that there was no fight before the attack and that they 'had no idea of the hatred he held in his hear,'" the NY Daily News reports.
Blackwell, charged with two counts of aggravated battery, reportedly said the two men will "be alright, it was just a little hot water on them." The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports Blackwell "described disgust with the men’s relationship in the police report."
There is a GoFundMe page set up for Marquez Tolbert's medical expenses. Here is a photo detailing his injuries:
Image, top, via WSB-TV