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17-year-old Missouri teen pleads guilty to hate crime against lesbian

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. — A 17-year-old Missouri teen has pleaded guilty to a hate crime charge in the July 24 beating of a local lesbian resident.

Mercedes Ayers, 17, was charged with a class B felony charge of first-degree burglary for entering the home of Jeana Terry on July 24 with the intent of assaulting her. However, the second charge of third-degree assault, which is normally a misdemeanor, was upgraded because Cape Girardeau County Prosecutor Morley Swingle who said that the assault was a hate crime due to the victim’s sexual orientation.

Mercedes M. Ayers

On Monday, prosecutor Swingle dropped the burglary charge agains Ayers in exchange for her plea baragin in Cape Girardeau County Circuit Court. Ayers pleaded guilty to felony assault motivated by discrimination in the attack on Terry.

According to court documents, Terry, 41, told law enforcement officials that Ayers pulled her from the home and, along with Ayers’ two younger siblings and some of their friends, beat her while yelling anti-gay slurs.

Terry said she opened the door and Ayers grabbed her by the arm and pulled her onto the porch and attacked her. Terry attempted to escape and yelled to Lange to call 911. Ayers allegedly pursued, punching Terry as several other juveniles — including two of Ayers’ younger siblings — joined in.

Terry never hit back, court records show, instead attempting from the ground to block the repeated blows and stomps to her head and body. Ayers allegedly yelled racial slurs at Terry during the beating and made comments about Terry’s sexual orientation. Ms Terry suffered serious injuries and was hospitalized.

Terry said she is relieved by Ayers’ plea and says she hopes the teenager will be able to turn her life around and finish high school. Ayers is scheduled to be sentenced in November.

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16 more reader comments:

  1. she should fix her hair.

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 7:33am
  2. She should fix her point of view, I don’t give a shit how she dresses. Now that I think about it, you really care more about her hair than the fact that she beat up a lesbo?

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 7:37am
  3. they should make his style a crime, i mean seriously you hate on somebody else when you look like a fucking clown?

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 7:41am
  4. typical…

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 7:46am
  5. Sure Kirstina, lets give people death penalty for assault……..

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 7:47am
  6. Is that a he or she

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 7:48am
  7. ha ha keith! i was about to say the same thing: she is looking all butch herself hating on lesbians….she would get all kinds of attention in the gay club lol

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 8:07am
  8. It sounds more like Ayers is a self hating lesbian and is taking her hate and aggression out on somebody that she actually admires for being out and open.

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 8:08am
  9. Hatred like that is taught…….she should be trying to get an education instead of robbing and attacking people….but people like this will push up on the wrong one and one day….and she will get her ass handed to her.

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 8:34am
  10. looking for cock, inbox me

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 9:47am
  11. Yep think lil Miss Mercedes will soon be finding her way out of the closet herself.

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 9:48am
  12. The photos were pretty brutal and though I really, really disagree with what she did and though it is easy to be aggressive in return, it’s not right. I’d rather her learn from time served in prison. Her getting beat up doesn’t necessarily mean she’ll learn. More hate, only breeds further hate. She didn’t give that woman a chance, but an eye for an eye and all. |:

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 10:28am
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    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 10:31am
  14. All those kids should have been charged, with both burglary and assault!! BS that only one got the brunt of it, exspecially since it was clearly pre-meditated!! >.<

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 11:06am
  15. This had to have been something she was taught her parents should be proud (NOT) I can’t stand when people teach their kids any kind of hate this is sick I think the parents should be charged sick bastards!!!!

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 11:23am
  16. While youre in prison I hope u get what u gave that innocent woman for being herself. It looks like u could be a stud yourself. U need to dig deep n find yourself and keep your f%# hands to yourself.

    Posted on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 12:11pm