An update in the "gay panic" defense of a teenager who killed a black gay Maryland man in a brutal street attack in Washington, D.C. and plead guilty to a misdemeanor. Robert Hannah is now free on bail after D.C. Superior Court Judge Rafael Diaz and the United States Attorney's Office accepted his guilty plea for simple assault in connection with the brutal September 2008 bashing of Tony Randolph Hunter, reports MetroWeekly.
Diaz has set the date of Hannah's sentencing for Oct. 14, during which he could be given a maximum of 180 days in jail, fined up to $1,000, or both. At the Thursday hearing, [U.S. Attorney Kevin] Flynn asked Diaz to hold Hannah in jail until sentencing. Defense attorney Joseph Caleb countered that Hannah is 'extremely reliable' and that his attendance record with this case is evidence of that. Caleb also argued that Hannah would not pose a threat if free until sentencing in that, according to the defense, Hunter provoked Hannah: "He was offended by the way [Hunter] touched him. … He had a knee-jerk reaction.''
19-year-old Hannah claims he punched Hunter after the gay man grabbed his crotch and butt on a Washington D.C. street. Hunter fell to the ground and hit his head on the pavement, lingering for ten days in a coma. One of Hunter's friends who was also attacked denies the sexual advance. Prosecutors failed to interview the witness and did not prosecute Hannah's accomplices.
Hannah's "knee jerk reaction" was to bash and kill a gay man without provocation. How much do you want to bet he will be sentenced to time served and given a cookie?
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