Man called ‘white boy’ before brutal attack in South Memphis

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- A 23-year-old, Graham Patton, has both eyes blacked out, his nose swollen and bandages all over his face following an attack in South Memphis.

"I mean he doesn't even look like the same person at all," Neysa Anderson, the victim's stepsister, said.

Police said the attack happened on Tuesday, Jan. 5, at the Pendleton Pines Apartments near Pendleton and Ketchum.

According to officers, Patton took a walk outside around 11 p.m. when two men he did not know came out of nowhere.

"Something along the lines of 'hey white boy what are you doing around here? You're not supposed to be here' or something and that was it," Anderson explained.

Anderson said Patton was knocked to the ground and severely beaten.

"It completely crushed his entire sinus cavity. Like his -- all the bones under his eyes, his face were all completely crushed," Anderson told WREG.

Police said the bad guys who did the crime are still out there on the streets.

"I was just very afraid," Michael Patton, the victim's father, said.

Michael Patton lives in East Tennessee but told WREG over the phone he has one question for his son's attackers.

"Why? Why would you do something like that to somebody that had no reason to be attacking? Doesn't make sense," Michael Patton asked.

The alleged racially motivated attack also did not make sense to people who live in that community. Neighbors said although crime happens there, people do not usually beat up others because of their skin color.

"No. Probably -- it's always two sides to the story. It ain't nothing like that," Layanna "Twin" Womble said.

"He wasn't robbed. There was nothing taken. It seemed to be just a violent hate crime," Anderson concluded.

Police have not said if they are investigating this case as a hate crime.

However, officers are searching for the men responsible for the beating.

If you have any information that may lead to an arrest, contact Crime Stoppers at 901-528-CASH.

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