'This Was Not a Hate Crime': Witnesses Describe Miami Beach Brawl Involving Gay Tourist - NBC 6 South Florida

'This Was Not a Hate Crime': Witnesses Describe Miami Beach Brawl Involving Gay Tourist

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Witnesses Reveal New Details in Burger King Brawl

    New details have been revealed about a brawl at a packed South Beach restaurant. NBC 6's Jamie Guirola has the exclusive details. (Published Thursday, April 7, 2016)

    New details have been revealed about a brawl at a packed South Beach restaurant. Two witnesses are stepping forward with their version of what led to a fight at the Miami Beach Whopper Bar.

    The victim said he was attacked because he's gay, but NBC 6 spoke exclusively with the witnesses who said the apparent victim was actually the aggressor.

    The South Beach Burger King beat-down has gotten a lot of attention online and across the country. Jordan Schaeffer said Monday he was attacked by a stranger because he's gay.

    "It was just a simple kiss with my boyfriend," Schaeffer said.

    But according to two independent witnesses, that's not what went down at all. The incident happened around 3 a.m. on March 14.

    "There was no kiss. This had nothing to do with being gay. This was not a hate crime," said one witness, who did not want to be identified.

    "No, there was no kiss. I assumed they had been fighting because Jordan was so angry," the second anonymous witness added.

    Before the fight, which was caught on video, one of the witnesses said Schaeffer was hostile toward everybody in the restaurant, and that he even got physical with him.

    "Jordan turned to me very aggressively, said some very angry things, shoved me -- not hard -- but was very angry," the witness said.

    Video of the fight appears to show Schaeffer leaving the bathroom and shoving somebody before the big fight happened.

    "The story was fabricated and it is all a lie," the witness added.

    The second witness  also saw the NBC 6 story online and said he had to tell his version of what happened.

    "He got into it with the guy at Burger King, threatening him, making sexual slurs, and instigating, saying he was going to fight him as well," the witness said.

    Both witnesses are gay and said, if this was a hate crime, they would have been the first to tell police.

    "Never did I hear any expletives or derogatory terms related to his sexual identity. In fact, I think Jordan was the more violent of the two individuals," one of the witnesses said. "I would personally hate to see someone be criminalized for something I don't believe was actually true."

    The Miami Beach Police Department gave NBC 6 a statement saying: "As with any case, we will investigate all leads thoroughly. We encourage anyone with information to come forward and talk to detectives."

    NBC 6 also spoke with Schaeffer's attorney Thursday, who said he had no comment.

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