Florida Keys

Suspect in gay-bashing attack out on bond, fighting extradition to the Keys

A North Carolina man suspected of a homophobic hate crime in downtown Key West Feb. 23 was released on $10,000 bond Thursday and will fight extradition to the Keys.

Brandon Ray Davis, 30, was taken into custody Wednesday by the Onslow County (N.C.) Sheriff’s Office on an “extraditable warrant” for felony aggravated battery stemming from the incident. Davis lives in Richlands, N.C.

Davis told an Onslow judge he will fight the extradition, Assistant Monroe County State Attorney Colleen Dunne said. But she expects he will not be successful.

Davis is accused of using a deadly weapon — his scooter — to nearly run down two men on bicycles while deluging them with homophobic comments. Since it’s classified as a hate crime, if Davis is convicted, he could face enhanced penalties.

Davis next appears in court in Onslow March 30, Dunne said. It’s at that appearance he must prove at least one of three things to quash what is known as a governor’s warrant, which is basically a directive ordering his arrest. The three things he can challenge is that the arrest warrant is technically wrong, it was not him who did the crime and he was not in Florida when it happened, Dunne said.

“I anticipate he will be remanded into custody and brought back to Florida,” she said, adding it could take about 20 days after his March 30 court appearance and that a private prisoner transport company is used for the trip.

Kevin Seymour and Kevin Price told police that about 1 a.m. on the 23rd, they were riding bicycles in the 700 block of Duval when they saw a man swerving on a rented scooter. Seymour says he shouted to warn the scooter rider, identified by police as Davis, that he almost hit a car. Davis yelled, “You guys are a couple of fags,” “I bet you faggots voted for that bitch Hillary” and “You live in Trump country now,” police say.

When Seymour threatened to call police, Davis allegedly told him, “If you do that, I’ll cut you up.”

At one point, the scooter rider struck the rear tire of Seymour’s bike, knocking him to the ground. Seymour and Price got the scooter tag number before he fled. The scooter was rented from A and M Rentals. It was found parked near the Southernmost Point.

Police say they identified Davis in part through the scooter rental agency, where Davis left a copy of his driver’s license so he could rent it. Working with North Carolina law enforcement, detectives obtained a photo of Davis. In a photo lineup, Seymour, Price and another witness said it was Davis in the photo, police said.

Seymour is listed as the victim in the incident.

Larry Kahn: 305-440-3218