Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Four Texas Men Plead Guilty To Hate Crimes After Targeting Gay Men For Home Invasions Via Grindr

Chancler Encalade
Four Texas men have pleaded guilty to federal hate crime charges after using Grindr to target gay men for home invasions.

From the Dallas NBC affiliate:

A 20-year-old man pleaded guilty on Monday to federal charges that he targeted gay men through a dating app in a series of Collin and Denton County home invasions earlier this year.

Chancler Encalade, along with three other men, used Grindr, a dating app for gay men, to arrange meetings with victims at their homes in Frisco, Plano and Aubrey, according to a Department of Justice news release.

The four men restrained their victims with tape, assaulted them, made derogatory statement about their sexual orientation and stole various property, according to the Justice Department. The crimes took place in January and February.

The other men involved, Nigel Garrett, Anthony Shelton and Cameron Ajiduah, have also pleaded guilty to federal charges and are awaiting sentencing.

Encalade faces a maximum life sentence and a $250,000 fine.

Additional info from the Department of Justice:

According to the plea agreement, Encalade admitted that he, Nigel Garrett, and Anthony Shelton used Grindr, a social media dating platform for gay men, to arrange to meet the victim at the victim’s home. Upon entering the victim’s home, the defendants restrained the victim with tape, physically assaulted the victim, and made derogatory statements to the victim for being gay. The defendants brandished a firearm during the home invasion, and they stole the victim’s property, including his motor vehicle.

A federal grand jury previously had returned an eighteen-count superseding indictment, against Encalade and three other men, which included charges for hate crimes, kidnappings, carjackings, and the use of firearms to commit violent crimes. The indictment also charged the defendants with conspiring to cause bodily injury because of the victims’ sexual orientation

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