Frank Macias is a Texas man charged with attacking a gay couple in Austin. Police say they expect to make more arrests in the January 19 beating of Spencer Deehring and Tristan Perry.
Macias’ bond was set at $300,000.
Perry and Deehring told police they were called racial slurs as they were holding hands while leaving a bar before being assaulted by “four or five guys.”
Perry suffered a concussion, internal bleeding, a broken nose, and other injuries. Deehring suffered a concussion and neck injuries.
Deehring and an eyewitness later both identified Macias as one of the attackers.
Austin police said they are investigating the attack as a hate crime.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Frank Macias is Charged With Assaulting a Gay Couple in Austin
Frank Macias, 22, of Georgetown, was arrested and booked into Travis County Jail in connection to the assault on Tristan Perry and his boyfriend Spencer Deehring on January 19.
Macias was charged with two counts of second-degree felony aggravated assault.
His bond was set at $150,000 for each charge.
Macias and another alleged attacker were identified to police by a tipster who called the crime stoppers hotline. Macias was later identified as one of the attackers by Deehring and another eyewitness.
2. Police Say They Expect to Arrest More Attackers
According to a police affidavit, eyewitness Jerone Young said Deehring and Perry were assaulted by four to five individuals.
Young identified two main aggressors, a white or Hispanic male in a windbreaker jacket and a white male with long blonde hair who was not wearing a shirt at the time.
Police say three more people are expected to be arrested, KVUE reported.
3. Tristan Perry and Spencer Deehring Said They Were Targeted for Holding Hands
According to police, Perry and Deehring said they were leaving Club Rain after celebrating a friend’s birthday when a man who walked by them called them “fa***ts.”
Deehring and Perry, who said they were holding hands at the time, told police they turned and asked “what did you say?”
The couple said the man then repeatedly called them “fa***ts” again before motioning to a group of several other men who then began to follow them while hurling homophobic slurs.
When Perry tried to “verbally defend himself” he was punched by the white man with no shirt and fell to the ground. The rest of the group began to kick him on the ground, they said.
When Deehring tried to defend his boyfriend, he was assaulted by the group as well until Young intervened.
Young told police that the group stopped attacking the couple when they saw him dialing 911 on his phone.
4. Perry and Deehring Suffered Serious Injuries in the Attack
Perry told police that he suffered a broken nose, a bruised orbital eye socket, a concussion, chipped front teeth, lacerations, stitches, and bruised ribs in the attack.
Spencer said he suffered a concussion, neck injuries, and bruising.
Police said in an affidavit that they found dried blood where the attack took place and found video surveillance footage of the victims being followed by the assailants.
5. Austin Police Are Investigating The Assault as a Hate Crime
Austin Police said they are investigating the attack as a hate crime.
“We weren’t acting crazy, we weren’t drinking, we were just walking back to our car after we had a great night with our friends,” Perry told KXAN.
“They started following behind us pretty closely yelling every expletive you can think of,” Deehring said. “The last thing I said to one of the guys before they attacked both of us was like, ‘I don’t have anything more to say to you guys, we’re just going home, leave us alone.’”
“Tristan took the first punch directly to his face, and that is what broke his nose,” Deehring said. “He took two or three more punches, and then he was down on the ground motionless, and he took a very hard kick to the back of the head.”
“If the bystander had not been there [the attackers] may have continued, it may have been much worse,” he added.
“We want people to understand that it is possible for this to happen, it’s not something where you could say its 2019, this doesn’t happen anymore, we are living proof of it,” Deehring said.
“It shouldn’t happen to anyone else, and it breaks my heart that it’s probably going to [keep happening] until these guys are caught,” Perry said. “Living in Corpus Christi and moving to Austin, I thought, ‘Oh everyone is going to be so open-minded.’ I think that a lot of people think that and it’s overlooked that this could happen to anybody, anywhere, anytime.”