“I’m sorry if anyone didn’t want to see this, but I want to show the world that we are far from a free world,” Alex Lyman of US hardcore act Slaves wrote his official Instagram account, along with a gruesome image of the stab wound he sustained during a violent, homophobia-fuelled knife attack.
Lyman, his bandmate Weston Richmond and another Californian musician were all seriously injured in the assault which, according to the local paper, Sacramento police have since officially dubbed a hate crime.
Yesterday, Lyman took to social media to explain what went down, alleging that he’d been targeted by his assailant for the crime of being “a faggot in skinny jeans”. He sustained a number of injuries, the worst of which was a gouge-wound to his side, not far from his spleen, measuring 4 inches long and 2 inches deep.
“To think that if I would have bought different pants or decided to look differently would have prevented something so hateful and physically but more so mentally and emotionally traumatizing from happening,” the guitarist, who is scheduled to play Vans Warped Tour with his band on July 14th, said in his most recent social media post.
Lyman also shared a lengthy and poignant statement regarding his feelings about what happened to him, which is bound to hit home for some members of the Sydney music community, who’ve recently been rocked by another violent, hate-related assault.
His statement reads, in part:
As hard as it is to believe me and my friends did nothing to cause confrontation, all it takes is one hateful person with too much power and an opinion of his own to put me and my friends in a situation that left our loved ones terrified that they may never see us again in their life.
For one man to try and murder 3 people that he would never have to see again in his life because his one opinion of how we have decided to present ourselves.
I’m so glad to be here another day and even more glad my friends Weston, Blake and Brad [are] still here to show the world that being a man isn’t measured by the amount of pain you can cause to one another but by the willingness to be someone that you love and the acceptance to love others for who they are.
I live in a world that I am more scared of now than the last 25 years of my life. But the support myself and the people involved have received gives us a genuine reminder that change may not be complete, but the will and the love for it is there.
…If it wasn’t for all these people and the support of my mother and wonderful girlfriend I’m not sure I would have wanted to make it off the operating table to live in a world that seemed so dark at the time.
Thank you everyone for reminding me of not a life that is, but a life that can be, from the bottom of my heart.
According to Sacramento’s SFGate, police originally arrested a 25-year-old man on charges of assault with a deadly weapon and possession of a firearm shortly after the crime, who was then granted bail. However, since interviewing the victims and reclassifying the incident as a hate crime, police have issued another warrant for his arrest.
Slaves, who are fronted by Jonny Craig of Dance Gavin Dance and Emarosa fame, are still scheduled to play their forthcoming shows, including their Warped Tour slot. However, they’ll be doing so without guitarist Richmond, who sustained a broken arm in his heroic attempt to save Lyman from the knife-wielding assailant.
While the third victim in the attack, Blake Abbey from local band Musical Charis, credited Lyman for saving his life. “My arm was completely mangled by a 7-8 inch Rambo knife,” he posted on Facebook. “I got out of surgery a few hours ago and I’m still in shock this happened to us.”
Local musicians have responded to the attack by planning an “I wear skinny jeans” show to benefit all the victims.
Check out Lyman’s Insta post below, but be warned – it’s not pretty.