UPDATED 11:30 a.m. Friday, Nov. 11:
Chris Ball, the alleged victim, is being accused of a hoax. The Santa Monica Police Department wrote in a Facebook post that they haven't gotten any information indicating the alleged crime actually happened. "We encourage the alleged victim to come forward and work with us if a crime did in fact take place," the post said. "A check of local hospitals revealed there was no victim of any such incident admitted or treated as well." Snopes lists the claim as "unproven" and points out that the reports don't mention a specific location or cite any police report.
Vice reports that people were questioning the story based on the picture alone, pointing out how perfectly white Ball's watch was despite the amount of blood on the rest of his body. They also note that in the picture allegedly from the ER, Ball isn't wearing a hospital wristband. When contacted by Vice, Ball clarified that the people in the bar "didn't start calling me a fag or anything like that," despite earlier reports. He said, "I was pretty hammered, so I was just egging them on a bit, [and I] fired back some insults." He added he was too drunk to remember the name of the exact bar. Still, Ball claims the incident did occur. He gave Vice pictures which appear to show staples in Ball's head, and also a copy of the hospital documentation showing he was treated for a head injury and cut—but Vice wasn't able to confirm either the hospital documentation or the picture.
Vice also points out that Ball has a history of doing stunts on YouTube, which earned him the attention of the media and the police. The film producer has also worked as a makeup artist and set designer for multiple TV shows and movies, which many critics believe suggests that Ball likely made up the event. Nonetheless, Ball sticks by the story.
ORIGINAL STORY BELOW:
After Donald Trump won the presidential election, many people in the LGBTQ community are concerned about what will happen over the next four years. Unfortunately, before Clinton had even conceded, a gay man was reportedly attacked by homophobic Trump supporters.
According to MetroNews Calgary, Chris Ball, a film producer from Calgary, Canada, was watching the U.S. election results Tuesday night at a bar in Santa Monica, California. As the results continued to pour in, supporters of both candidates were getting heated. Ball described the scene: "People started launching homophobic slurs at me from afar. I mean, I kind of got into it, but I didn't want to provoke them." The people were allegedly yelling things like, "We got a new president, you fucking faggots."
Later, when he left the bar alone, he was jumped by a group of men while walking through an alley. One of the men smashed a beer bottle on Ball's head. Ball fell to the ground and smashed his head on the concrete, which caused him to black out.
He recalled to MetroNews Calgary: "When I came to, I remember waking up and wiping the blood from my eyes. I called some friends, they picked me up and I went right to the hospital." There, the gash on his head was stitched up with five staples.
Fortunately, Ball is feeling okay now, and he thanked people for their support in a Facebook post. "I'm alive and well. And still very gay," he wrote, adding a heart emoji.
Ball thinks the attack was fueled by hate more than politics. He added that the group of homophobic drunk men might've used Trump's rhetoric as an excuse to get into a fight.
Friends of Ball have spoken out against the attack too.
In a Facebook post that's been shared thousands of times, Noah Kentis explained his friend's situation, "To celebrate Trump's win last night, some Trump supporters decided to smash a beer bottle into my close friend's head last night for being gay, sending him to the ER." Kentis continued, "It's a shame to think any social progression in that manner is being completely lost at an alarming rate. And it's not Trump that I fear, it's his supporters that have already resorted to violence, just because of the energy they feed off of him."
"This hatred, bigotry, and senseless violence all comes from the same part of America that voted in a demagogue who spits hatred as his rhetoric," another friend of Ball's, K.C. MacPherson, wrote on Facebook. "I hope this isn't a sign of where we're going as people."