A Frisco man was sentenced to 15 years in prison for his role in a hate crime against a man he met on a dating site.
Nigel Garrett, 21, was sentenced Wednesday and three other men — Anthony Shelton, Chancler Encalade Jr., and Cameron Ocion Ajiduah — also pleaded guilty and are awaiting sentencing in the Eastern District of Texas for their roles in the crime.
Garrett admitted that he posed as a gay man on Grindr — a dating site app for gay men, and arranged to meet at the victim's house.
When Garrett and the other men entered the victim's home, they tied the man up with tape, beat him up and made derogatory statements to the victim for being gay. The armed men also stole the victim's property and his car during the home invasion.
A federal grand jury returned an 18-count indictment against Garrett and the others on May 10, 2017. The 16-page indictment includes charges for hate crimes, kidnappings, carjackings and the use of firearms to commit the crimes.
The indictment also said the defendants posed as gay men on Grindr and conspired to assault the victims during four home invasions between Jan. 17, 2017, and Feb. 7 in Plano, Frisco and Aubrey. The indictment said the men committed the crimes because of the victims' sexual orientation
Acting U.S. Attorney Brit Featherston said in a news release from the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division that violence, in any form, is an affront to the American principles of freedom and safety that our communities are entitled to.
"The Department of Justice has made prosecution of violent crime a priority," Featherston said. "The Eastern District of Texas, in prosecuting this case and others like it, intends to demonstrate that this priority is something more than just a slogan."
The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the Plano Police Department, and the Frisco Police Department are investigating this case.
The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Tracey Batson of the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Texas and Trial Attorney Saeed Mody of the Civil Rights Division.