Gay mayoral candidate 'set on fire, beaten'
ONE of the first openly gay political candidates in the southern US state of Mississippi was beaten, "dragged and set on fire" during his murder, his family has claimed.
Marco McMillian, a 33-year-old management consultant who was campaigning to be mayor of the city of Clarksdale, was found dead near a levee on the Mississippi river last week.
Lawrence Reed, a local 22 year-old who crashed Mr McMillian's car the day before, has been charged with his murder. The authorities have declined to elaborate further.
Mr McMillian's family said that his body was bruised and burned.
"We feel that this was not a random act of violence, based on the condition of the body when it was found," they said in a statement.