Father charged with assault of gay son

A former Indianapolis Colts football player, Joe Staysniak, was arrested on Tuesday morning for allegedly assaulting his son and his son’s boyfriend. According to NBC News, police were called to Staysniak’s home just before midnight on Monday after a young man called saying Staysniak had attacked him earlier that night. The retired NFL player has been charged with a felony count of strangulation and two misdemeanor counts of battery.

Staysniak reportedly received a call from a neighbor about a suspicious car parked in his front yard. He admitted to approaching the car with his gun and found his 18-year-old son and the son’s boyfriend inside. According to a probable cause affidavit, Staysniak opened the rear passenger door and grabbed the boyfriend’s hood, choking him.

Staysniak’s son stated that his father punched him, causing his lip to bleed, and then punched the boyfriend. The boyfriend told police that Staysniak flashed a gun and held it against his face. Staysniak reportedly told the two young men that they were “lucky he saw who it was.”

Staysniak claimed that he did not hit the boyfriend and denied pointing his gun at anyone. He said that after he saw who was in the car, he told his son’s boyfriend never to return to his property. Staysniak alleged that his son tried to attack him and he shoved him back with an open hand, physically restraining him until his wife separated them.

Staysniak was released later on Tuesday and appeared via video for his initial court appearance. This is not the first time Staysniak has been in trouble for his behavior. In 2020, he was suspended from the Indianapolis radio show he co-hosted after making racist comments about the protests in response to the police killing of George Floyd.

On June 3, 2020, Staysniak stated on air that he found it “harder and harder to believe [black people] are being targeted” by police and claimed that the Confederate flag was not a racist symbol. In a subsequent statement apologizing for his comments, he characterized the protests as “riots.”

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