An androgynous gay man in Cornwall faced homophobic abuse while simply trying to pick up prescription.
Major-Troon Collis, 24 was collecting some medication at Boots in Camborne, Cornwall, on 12 November when the homophobic abuse began.
Describing the incident on Instagram, he wrote: “While approaching the store, a group of loiterers (two male and one female) decided to pass comment on my appearance, questioning my gender, calling me a dirty faggot, a queer, the usual s**t I hear daily basis and ignore.”
One of the men said: “If that was my son I would put it down.” The man then told Collis to exit the shop, so that he could “smash [his] face in”.
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Collis told ITV News: “I refused to engage with him. I kept myself to myself, my head forward. He could have dragged me out of that store easily within seconds. He was so close to me but luckily he didn’t and I didn’t rise to his abuse and his aggression.
“I certainly don’t deserve it. I did nothing wrong. I said nothing. I was just collecting my medication.”
He reported the incident to Devon and Cornwall Police and described the police officer who came to his home as “brilliant”, but said that he is subjected to similar homophobic abuse every day.
He said: “Pretty much every day I leave my house, I go about my daily business and unfortunately I’m always abused by others – name calling, homophobic abuse, sometimes even physical.
“And it’s got to the point where I’m annoyed with it, I don’t want to do this any more and I don’t deserve the abuse. What happened to not judging a book by its cover?
“There’s probably others out there that can’t take it. They can’t be themselves. They’re unable to open up and they feel trapped and I think that’s wrong. And they’re scared to come forward and actually, no, this is not acceptable, you should come forward.”
He added on Instagram: “It took me a long time to let go of the shame of being a feminine boy and my struggles with body dysmorphia – I’m not going to allow this p***k to get me down or to treat others with such disregard.”
A police spokesperson told ITV: “Police are investigating reports of a hate crime on Commercial Street, Camborne on Thursday 12 November at around 5pm.
“It was reported that a group of people had verbally abused a man using homophobic language. Police enquiries remain ongoing in relation to this matter.”