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Deacon Stabbed In Bradford

By Emily Cassulo
By ecassulo@wbbjtv.com

A Gibson County deacon is recovering after being stabbed Thursday night, just days after his nephew accused him of assaulting him and his boyfriend when they tried to attend church last week.

Terry Flatt was shocked when he got the news that his brother was stabbed.

"I just feared for his life," Flatt said. "It's my little brother. I love him and I was definitely worried about him."

Around 8 Thursday night, Bradford police said Patrick Flatt, a deacon at Grace Fellowship Church in Fruitland, was attacked as he went to turn off a light in his backyard shed.

"In the doorway of his out building, when he was coming back out to go back in the house, he was jumped and attacked by what we think right now are at least two men," Sgt. Dave Chaffin said.

And in the attack, officers said Flatt was hit in the head from behind, slashed in the back of the neck, and stabbed in the arm.

According to investigators, the two men were wearing ski masks and dark clothing.

Earlier this week, Flatt's nephew accused him and other deacons of assaulting him and his boyfriend for being gay when they tried to attend church services. Flatt told ABC 7 Eyewitness News off camera that those are all lies. Police will not say if the two attacks are connected.

"Right now we're following up on a couple of different theories, a couple of really good working theories, but it would really be premature to speculate and go, 'Yes, they're related.' I really couldn't say that right now," he said.

Sgt. Chaffin said when caught, the two men could face a minimum of an aggravated assault charge.

Another deacon, Eugene McCoy, was also allegedly involved in the attack on the same-sex couple.

The Gibson County fire department is investigating what caused McCoy's home to catch fire last Saturday morning, which is near Trenton.

No injuries were reported.