CHAPEL HILL, NC (WRAL/WBTV) - A gay student at UNC-Chapel Hill, who claimed a brutal hate-crime assault last week, was likely not telling the truth, university officials told WRAL Tuesday.
UNC-CH Chancellor Holden Thorp said the student, who told authorities he was branded with a searing hot object because of his sexual orientation, filed a false police report and that the incident will not be reported as a hate crime, WRAL reported.
Quinn Matney, who is gay, told authorities April 5 that a man walked up to him near a foot bridge on campus, called him a derogatory name, told him "here is a taste of hell," and held a heated object to his skin for several seconds, leaving third- and fourth-degree burns, WRAL reported.
The University had classified the incident as a hate-crime and various campus groups were outraged by the alleged crime -- that might have never have actually taken place as Matney claims.
Randy Young, a spokesman for UNC's public safety department, said charges of filing a false police report are likely against Matney.
University officials initially called the assault a hate crime and pledged to "bring the strongest possible charges against the attacker."
Thorp said the university takes incidents of harassment seriously, but did not release any additional details.