news

Gay YouTuber Calum McSwiggan: 'If somebody is a victim of a crime, that person should be believed'

2016-07-02
Earlier this week we reported that British YouTube star Calum McSwiggan has been charged with one count of filing a false report of a criminal offence after claiming he was beaten by three men outside an LA gay club earlier this week. McSwiggan posted a picture of himself lying in a hospital bed on Tuesday (June 28), alleging that he had been the victim of an anti-gay attack outside West Hollywood nightclub The Abbey. “With three broken teeth and six stitches in my forehead, I’ve never felt so terrified to be a gay man in the public eye,” he wrote at the time, before accusing authorities of treating him “like a second class citizen” during the ordeal. However, police confirmed yesterday that after responding to McSwiggan’s initial 911 call, they were unable to substantiate his claims as he had “no visible injuries”. But in a new interview with the Advocate, McSwiggan defends his story. He said that he feels "shocked and upset" that he has criminal charges against him. "I think if somebody is a victim of a crime, that person should be given the benefit of the doubt and believed," he said. "Just because there are no physical markings on my face other than the broken teeth, that doesn't mean I wasn't assaulted, and that is why the police think I wasn't assaulted." McSwiggan has received backlash on social media as people questioned his story and McSwiggan says it's "ruined my reputation". cal He adds, "The response on social media is ruining my reputation. People are saying that I'm making this up, which is just heartbreaking." "My whole adult life I've done everything I can for this community and I've always dedicated myself to LGBT+ issues, so now my entire reputation is being discredited because the police simply didn't believe I did this and I have said that that's not the police's fault." He continues, "The were doing their job and I think that the police probably didn't believe this happened to me, but it did happen to me. And just because they can't see that, there needs to be something in place to protect people and victims of hate crimes." Damien Nichols is one of the men McSwiggan claims attacked him. Nichols has revealed that he's "shocked" with McSwiggan's version of events and said, "He's abusing this 'hate crime law,' he's just insane - complete madness, he was completely drunk and obliterated, acting a fool, acting crazy." When McSwiggan was questioned on Nichols, he said he "didn't know" the name. Nichols also commented on McSwiggan's hospital bed selfie on Facebook and said: "WTF Man! You were smashing people's cars, you keyed my friends car! You stole a f*cking bottle from the abbey. No one beat you up! You were the one acting crazy! You need to apologise for this, honestly we have gay bashing all over this world, every day. Young men and women are killed for being gay. Don't cry wolf!" You can read the full interview over at the Advocate. His next court appearance is scheduled for July 19. More stories: Transgender Eastenders star reveals how he came out to his parents in public Man who murdered teenage girl at Jerusalem Pride sentenced to life in prison