This is another lovely piece of gay rights propaganda being shared around on Facebook:
McKinney, the man who was behind Shepard’s killing, was convicted of felony murder, aggravated robbery and kidnapping. He was a heavy user and a dealer, McKinney was well-known with the methamphetamine crowd, according to Ryan Bopp, who was one of McKinney’s friends and drug associates at the time. McKinney told Vargas he set out the night of Oct. 6, 1998, to rob a drug dealer of $10,000 worth of methamphetamine. But after several attempts, McKinney was not able to carry out his plan. Henderson said he thought if he could keep McKinney drinking, he’d forget the robbery plan. But according to McKinney, when he encountered Shepard at the Fireside Lounge, he saw an easy mark. McKinney told “20/20” Shepard was well-dressed and assumed he had a lot of cash.
“Shepard was sitting at the bar, McKinney recalls. ‘He said he was too drunk to go home. And then he asked me if I’d give him a ride. So I thought, yeah, sure, what the hell,’ according to McKinney. ‘All three got in the front seat of McKinney’s pickup, and Henderson took the wheel. McKinney told police that at some point Shepard reached over and grabbed his leg. In response, McKinney said, he hit him with his pistol. “I was getting ready to pull it on him anyway,’ he said. McKinney says he asked for, and got, Shepard’s wallet, which had only $30 in it. But even though Shepard handed over his money, McKinney continued beating him. When pressed by Vargas as to why he continued beating Shepard after he had already taken his wallet, McKinney said, “Sometimes when you have that kind of rage going through you, there’s no stopping it. I’ve attacked my best friends coming off of meth binges.”
It was the guys who built this story Up as though it was a hate crime and was killed because he was queer. Just hours after Shepard’s battered body was discovered, and before anyone knew who had beaten him, Shepard’s friends Walt Boulden and Alex Trout began spreading the word that Shepard was openly gay and that they were concerned the attack may have been a gay-bashing. Boulden told “20/20” in an interview shortly after the attack in 1998, “I know in the core of my heart it happened because he revealed he was gay. And it’s chilling. They targeted him because he was gay.” And the story stuck, why let the truth get in the way of a good piece of propaganda?