Man Says He Woke Up In ICU After Being Drugged & Beaten In WeHo
A young man says he woke up in the hospital with no recollection of how he got there after going out in West Hollywood this past weekend. Brandon Akridge, a 27-year-old bartender and model, told KTLA that he went out Saturday night to Mickey's, a popular gay dance club on Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood. He recalls telling employees at the club that he was leaving at about 1:40 a.m., but that's about all he can remember. He remembers seeing a friend's face, and then waking up in the ICU.
Akridge contacted the friend, who told him that he had found Akridge outside and called 9-1-1. The friend said Akridge "wasn't making any sense" and was "holding onto the [parking] meter, pouring blood from [his] face."
In addition to one very bruised eye, Akridge has cuts on his face and bruising on his chest and hip. He also suffered defense wounds to his arms, and said doctors found traces of "date rape drugs" in his system.
If he was drugged, Akridge isn't sure if that happened at Mickey's, the Abbey or somewhere else he'd been that night. What he does know is that his case isn't particularly unique.
West Hollywood has had a string of violent incidents recently. In April, Chris de la Cruz said he was beaten by two men who yelled anti-gay slurs at him as he walked to his car near Robertson Boulevard and Keith Avenue. Also in April, 25-year-old Corey Stedman was found by a passerby at Santa Monica Boulevard at Sweetzer Avenue after being jumped by a group of men.
In January of 2015, Don Brooks was attacked by a group of men at Santa Monica Boulevard and Fairfax Avenue who he said also shouted slurs at him. On Memorial Day in 2015, Kirk Doffing, 45, was viciously attacked at Santa Monica and San Vicente boulevards, suffering brain damage. In July of 2014, 37-year-old Ramon Estrada vanished after going out to the Gold Coast bar in West Hollywood. He turned up a week later, badly injured and in a coma. Estrada ultimately died of his injuries.
Akridge is missing a lot of work due to his injuries, and according to a GoFundMe set up to help him get back on his feet, had just started a new job.