WARNING: There is a graphic photo below which shows the woman’s injuries.
MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) – An Alabama woman is recovering from a severe beating that happened on Thanksgiving Day. Her family said the attack happened because she is gay.
Mallory Owens has been undergoing treatment at USA Medical Center in Mobile, and was released Monday. Her family said she is the victim of a hate crime. They say Owens’ girlfriend’s brother attacked her because she is a lesbian.
“He tried to kill her. He’s lucky he didn’t kill her. She’s lucky to be alive,” said Owens’ mother, Kristi Taylor.
Taylor told WKRG-TV she tried to stop her daughter from going to the meal.
“She was invited over by the family to eat Thanksgiving. I did not want her to go,” said Taylor. “I begged her not to go knowing how the family felt about her but she said they’re trying to be nice.”
Owens was beaten severely, to the point where she had to have facial reconstruction surgery. Surgeons installed metal plates in her cheek bones.
The man charged in the case is 18-year-old Travis Hawkins. Hawkins is charged with second-degree assault and has bonded out of jail.
Mobile prosecutors are investigating the case, but District Attorney Ashley Rich said she is not calling this a hate crime at this point.
“We are assessing her injuries. We are assessing everything regarding her injuries and her hospital stay, but at this time, he is charged with causing serious physical injuries to her, which is assault 2nd degree under the laws of the state of Alabama,” said Rich.
WKRG News 5 reports family and supporters of Owens are pushing for Hawkins to be charged with attempted murder. However, friends of Travis Hawkins say it is not a hate crime, and said Hawkins and Owens just never got along.
Owens’ family says Hawkins attacked Owens earlier this year with a pipe wrench, but they did not press charges in that incident.