A Black father of five was shot seven times in Stockton, Calif., in what is being investigated as a hate crime that reportedly occurred after he told a white motorist he needed to slow down.
The Black man survived the shooting and is recovering in the hospital. According to ABC 10, 45-year-old Bobby Gayle finished up a construction job in North Stockton on October 8, when the encounter reportedly began. Gayle’s brother, Marlon Gayle, told reporters that Bobby saw a man speeding through the parking lot and shouted at him to slow down, to which the man allegedly responded by stopping his pick-up truck, getting out, and firing at Bobby while calling him the n-word.
“So, it was a hate crime,” Marlon said. “The guy doesn’t know my brother. My brother doesn’t know him. Out of nowhere, he started calling him the n-word and started shooting him.”
In fact, Marlon said he found out about the shooting when his brother left him a voicemail—which the authorities have a recording of—saying, “Marlon, I’ve been shot. Pray for me, swear to God—please, in the name of Jesus, hallelujah.”
Marlon also said that while Bobby was shot in his throat, upper arm, shoulder, and twice in his face, the shooter miraculously managed to miss all vital organs and arteries. But that doesn’t mean significant and permanent damage wasn’t done.
“We don’t know if he’ll be able to work at the same capacity,” he said. “The doctors are letting us know. Our first thing…is being able to see that he is breathing right. He’s talking right.”
Police confirmed the attack is being investigated as a hate crime. The Stockton Police Department posted to Facebook photos of the suspect and his vehicle. The suspect’s truck, which is described by the department as “a late model Chevrolet Silverado extended cab truck with aftermarket chrome-colored wheels and tint on the back three windows,” can be seen pretty clearly.
Police have now arrested 31-year-old Michael Hayes in connection to the shooting.
Hayes has been booked in San Joaquin County Jail and is facing charges of attempted homicide, assault with a deadly weapon, and other weapons charges.
Gayle’s family has set up a GoFundMe page for the victim as he recovers.