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Last night was the worst night of my life and I'm really struggling to find the words to talk about it. After one of the most wonderful weekends at VidCon we went out to a gay club to celebrate, and towards the end of the evening I was separated from my friends and beaten up by three guys. The authorities should have been there to help and protect me but instead they treated me like a second class citizen. 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. All I can do is thank my wonderful YouTube friends for being with me the whole way. I'd be lost without them. Right now I don't feel that I'm in the right place to talk about this but I will be addressing this fully in the future. UPDATE: I've posted a full statement of the night's events on my Facebook page.
On Monday night, viral YouTube star Calum McSwiggan posted what looked like a harrowing story on his social media accounts. This includes the above Instagram photo where he related an evening gone wrong. McSwiggan, who posed in a hospital bed with a bandaged forehead while surrounded by medical flotsam, claimed to have been assaulted. This happened, he said, while celebrating at a gay bar, and he claimed to have sustained forehead stitches and three broken teeth. He also alleged that police “treated me like a second class citizen” instead of protecting him from harm.
McSwiggan’s accusations against police surely triggered what came later, but first, another viral YouTuber tweeted plenty of support beforehand. Riyadh Khalaf, who was namechecked in McSwiggan’s Instagram post, asked everyone to support his friend.
Police now say that McSwiggan faked his own assault. Holly M. Perez, captain of the West Hollywood Station of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, tells The Advocate that authorities were “unable to substantiate” the alleged assault after being summoned to the night club. Police reveal that McSwiggan had “no visible injuries” at that point, which was also the case when they arrested him for vandalism a few hours later.
And that’s not even the most bizarre part of the story. Police put McSwiggan in a solo cell, and he “was then observed injuring himself with the handle and receiver to a payphone.” Then they carted him off to the hospital, and he’s now out on $20,000 bail. One would think that these social media postings would suddenly disappear, but McSwiggan is holding firm with his version of events. He claims that he’s barred from speaking on the matter until after his Wednesday court date. Khalaf also tweeted again and claimed he saw his friend screaming after the alleged attack.
Here’s a before-after comparison photo set from the evening’s strange events. McSwiggan’s mugshot reveals no visible injuries at all.
(Via The Advocate)