The first reports out of the Jacksonville, Florida area was that after interviewing locals, police reported a transgender victim was severely beaten, tied by the ankles to the bumper of a minivan and dragged for nearly two blocks in a horrific attack in Florida last week. News released today and from testimony from the victim’s family now has the victim identifying as a gay man who is still in the hospital receiving treatment for life-threatening injuries.
Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office (JSO) Assistant Chief Brien Kee made a statement over the weekend, “I don’t know how this person identifies and, obviously, we want to be respectful of how this person identifies himself,” Kee said.
Kee told News4Jax over the weekend that the sheriff’s office has have video of the incident but “can’t release it” because “it is horrendous.”
“It sounds like a hate crime, some type of revenge incident,” News4Jax crime and safety analyst Ken Jefferson said of the crime. “Their purpose was to kill that person, evidently. If they’re … tying them to a vehicle and dragging him through the street, they don’t want that person to live.”
Eric Brightman, the Majestic Plaza maintenance man, who had identified the victim as a transgender individual, said the attack started inside one of the units and then dragged him down the street with a rope.
On Sunday, the police arrested 34-year old Eric Bridges for attacking the victim, whom police say Bridges knew.
Here is today’s coverage of the incident from News4Jax