"It was a gay-bashing kind of deal—that's the way it reads to me," Deputy District Attorney Brent Capshaw said. "I've got all three of them making those comments to the police. It sure sounds like a hate crime."
When he fell, the men began to kick him saying, "You want to die, faggot?" the police report states. Shetima was then pulled into the men's hotel room, where they continued to punch and kick him before he escaped.
Paul, of Shiprock, and Yazzie, of Dennehotso Ariz., were charged with kidnapping and felony aggravated battery, and waived preliminary hearings. If convicted of the charges as a hate crime, they could each face 14 years in prison.
"Here you don't have this active aggression of young men looking to beat up a homosexual," said Cosme Ripol, representing Thompson. "You have a homosexual continually advertising his homosexuality, and he's coming around these guys and wanting to cry and share his pain and anguish over a failed relationship, over booze."