CW: Details of homophobia attack
A gay man who survived a brutal homophobic attack in Manchester which left him scarred for life has appeared on Good Morning Britain to speak about the hate crime which occurred on his birthday in July 2019.
Ryan Turner was attacked by a number of men who left him scarred for life with one assailant, Brandon Forrester, stamping on his face as he shouted homophobic slurs.
While Forrester pleaded guilty to ABH, he only received 88 hours of community service as part of a suspended sentence due to his “previous good character”.
Ryan spoke to hosts Alex Beresford and Charlotte Hawkins about his experience in a bid to raise awareness of the rise of homophobic attacks across the UK.
18 months after the attack, Ryan says he can still vividly remember the events that took place which still gives him nightmares.
Speaking about his recovery, Ryan said: “I still have my nights and my days, but from when it first happened to now, I feel so much better, a lot more myself.
“I have still got a lot of a building to for myself, I ned to get back into my modelling and my drag, but compared to what I was 18 months ago I feel a lot better and brighter.”
Asked about his attacker not receiving any jail time, Ryan said: “There definitely should be tougher penalties, it might have not gone right for myself and I might not have got the decision that I wanted, but I just want people to know there are options and support out there for anyone going through a similar situation, we will get help for it.
“And just be yourself, because there is nothing wrong with it.”
He continued: “I have never had any issues with my sexuality, I have a great friendship group and my family are so supportive, so I had never encountered anything like this.
“It’s crazy to think it is happening still now.”
'It's on the rise. Things like this still happens'
He says it's important to be supportive of each other. pic.twitter.com/Urz5MyPNVM
— Good Morning Britain (@GMB) February 19, 2021
One viewer tweeted: “So sorry this happened to you Ryan. You send such an important message that we all should be more supportive and kind to each other. Stay strong and positive“.
“What a beautiful person inside and out. I can’t believe this is even a thing. Credit for making a stand.” added another.
“It’s disgraceful but keep being you! There will always be the haters no matter what but if they are shown the red card and booted off social media that would be a start.” wrote another viewer.
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