(Editor’s note: Colin Flaherty has done more reporting than any other journalist on what appears to be a nationwide trend of skyrocketing black-on-white crime, violence and abuse. WND features these reports to counterbalance the virtual blackout by the rest of the media due to their concerns that reporting such incidents would be inflammatory or even racist. WND considers it racist not to report racial abuse solely because of the skin color of the perpetrators or victims.)
EDITOR’S NOTE: The links in the following report may contain offensive language.
The Knockout Game has a new rule: Watch out for the Moms, the victim’s moms.
This version of the Knockout Game began like most others: A black mob found a defenseless white college student. They punched him in the face. Only stopping when they got tired and he got knocked out.
Then they ran away, laughing hard and loud. Leaving Trevor Godfrey bleeding, unconscious and shaking with convulsions.
Usually that is the end of it – just another case of racial violence played out by the hundreds in more than 80 cities across the country, detailed both in WND.com and the book White Girl Bleed a Lot: The return of racial violence and how the media ignore it.
But this was different: This time the victim and his family decided not to walk away.
“Trevor never saw them when he was almost killed, so he never had a chance to put up a fight,” said Trevor’s mom, Sherry Godfrey. “But we are fighting back now and we will not stop.”
Trevor’s ordeal began in January. He was living next door to a house popular with Missouri State University Springfield football players as well as members of Omega Psi Phi, an elite black fraternity.
It was a few minutes before 2 a.m., and the crowd next door was getting rowdy. So Trevor, an MSU student, figured he would move his car before the party-goers damaged it. Again.
The way they had damaged other cars at other parties at that house. When he went outside, a group of 20 black people was gathered near his car.
The next thing Trevor remembers is waking up in the hospital with head injuries, broken bones and missing teeth. Almost unrecognizable.
Trevor’s roommates found him because they were outside looking for the people who played the Knockout Game with one of them a few minutes before. Same people. Same party. Right next door.
Three people lived there, all connected to Omega Psi Phi, including the fraternity president.
The house was not an “official” facility of the fraternity. But lots of frat members hung out there during their frequent parties. Lots of football players too. And they were not playing nice as one party-goer told police:
a group of football players came to the house extremely intoxicated. He said they were out of hand and were tearing up Kelvin Jones’s house.
At one point they broke a coffee table.
He said this specific group of football players was in and out of the house all night.
When Trevor Godfrey was assaulted they were outside. At some point they all ran to the front of the house and some came inside.
This was when Trevor Godfrey was assaulted.
Most of this drunken group left the house before police arrived.
He said he did not see the assault but believed it was likely they were involved.
One of Trevor’s roommates said he saw the next door neighbor, Kelvin Jones, running away from where Trevor was lying unconscious. According to police reports, he:
saw the group of people run from the rear parking area to the front porch of (Kelvin’s house.) . He said several in the group were laughing and giggling about something. He also thought he saw Kelvin Jones in the crowd.
As the police arrived, Several MSU football players, past and present, and others left. Police talked to Kelvin Jones and frat president Emmanuel Chapman but they stonewalled them. Finally the police were able to question the party-goers who remained.
Although one witness saw Kelvin Jones leaving the scene of the crime, Kelvin said he did not know anything about anything: Who was outside. Who assaulted Trevor Godfrey or his roommate. Where they went. The only thing Kelvin Jamaal Jones knew for sure is that he did not do it.
Curiously, a few weeks later, Kelvin Jones was one of at least two people from the party who attended an MSU rally to demand justice for Trayvon Martin. Kelvin Jones may have been reticent about talking with the police, but he was positively loquacious with a reporter.
He told the local paper “he experienced racism in Springfield.”
“Jones said he was in front of the house he rents near campus teaching some black female students some dance moves, when a vehicle drove by with three whites, one of whom shouted a racial slur.”
“It’s something they feel comfortable saying when they are in a vehicle and they can get away,” Jones said. “What we hope to accomplish is justice for Trayvon, No.1, and possibly the elimination of racism in America.”
Justice for Trevor was not on that list for Kelvin Jones.
Enter the Godfrey family. At first they were confident the police would find the criminals. But after a few months, police suspended their investigation and the football coach stopped returning their calls.
The police had something, but apparently not enough: At least three people were pointing at four other people as being involved: Trevor’s roommate fingered Kelvin Jones. Other party-goers dropped a dime on two former football players, Caddarrius Dotson and Byron Hightower, as well as student and aspiring football player Dontae Obie.
“We even learned about another assault a few weeks later that the police say may have involved the same people who assaulted Trevor,” said Sherry Godfrey. “It was the same kind of thing: The Knockout Game at a party.”
This Knockout Game began when an MSU student riding a bike hit a rock and found himself lying in the street right in front of a house party. A Good Samaritan from the party asked if he was OK and offered to help him up.
Extending one hand to help, he used the other to punch the biker in the face.
The attacker walked back to the party, laughing.
Like the assault on Trevor Godfrey, a determined mom dug to find the truth. This mom lived in St. Louis, where during her career as an emergency room nurse, she saw dozens of victims of the Knockout Game.
Never thinking one day her some might be among them. Not in Springfield.
According to police reports, she talked to a witness from the party who told her that he was:
told by a lot of people that were there that a male named Obie, last name unknown, was the person that assaulted the MSU student. (He) told her he was 100% sure it was Obie.
That would be Dontae Obie, aspiring football player and MSU student, also present at the Kelvin Jones party from a few weeks before.
Dontae, his mom and his lawyer submitted to an interrogation. He said he was at the party where Trevor was beat, but not at the party where the biker was punched. But he might know who did it:
He later reported to me that he heard an individual named “Boobie” whose first name was Byron was responsible for striking (Trevor Godfrey.)
When asked about the assault that took place on (the bicyclist) , Dontae Obie claimed to have been at a “club” on that night.
With this information and using police resources, I was able to determine “Boobie” or “Byron” was Byron Hightower Jr.
Hightower was a member of the football team. He told police he just happened to be in Springfield in January and again a few weeks later. But as far as assaulting anyone, he did not do anything or know about anyone who did.
The police had come to another dead end. Many would have walked away.
Not Sherry Godfrey. She may not have known who tried to kill her son, “but we know for sure someone from that party knows something. Someone from the football team or the fraternity knows who assaulted Trevor.”
Sherry decided to go public. She requested a copy of the police reports and started her own investigation. She found many of the people questioned were football players and frat members. She read their Tweets and their Facebook pages.
At Kelvin Jones’ Facebook page, he proclaimed he was “Not a Fighter, But will Knock you the F*** out.”
The other Twitter and Facebook pages are mainly concerned with drinking, football, and putting out the occasional request for a massage.
Then she put up a web page, where she posted all this information. You can find it at JusticeinSpringfield.com.
Her sons put a link on their Facebook pages.
And soon they were deluged with support from all over the country and getting more than 1,000 visits a day. The university even called – but several players involved either as witnesses or potential suspects remained on the team this year.
Police are taking a new interest. And the people who did it, whoever they are, wherever they are, are feeling this game isn’t so much fun anymore.
And from local newspapers and TV stations? Not a word about any of the racial violence.
In the meantime, if you are in the market for clothing popular with the Springfield Knockout Game set, just visit Boobie’s Facebook page. There you can find links to his favorite brand of clothing, with the same slogan printed on every shirt: Fight Now, Talk Later.