This week is the trial of Kathryn Knott, accused of participating in a violent gay-bashing in Philadelphia last year that left a gay couple unconscious.
But it appears Knott, the daughter of a Bucks County police chief, has a secret weapon: a gay cousin who has come forward to defend her honor.
"This is a girl who loves so kindly that even my young and confused self could find comfort in her presence," wrote 19-year-old Tim Perkins on Facebook yesterday.
"And yet this is the girl whose reputation is being brutally attacked in a misguided effort to protect a community that I know she cares about. And that is not okay."
Perkins, who attends Emory University, calls Knott "an innocent girl" and asked the jury to "please allow Kathryn to go home."
"As a proud and active member of the LGBTQ+ community, I cannot in good conscience hold my tongue while my cousin gets dragged through the judicial mud (even if such a case would improve the safety of individuals like me)."
In the post, he recalls how Knott would paint his nails during family reunions and watched him dance to High School Musical. "Kathryn had never once made me feel uncomfortable for being or expressing myself."
Knott, 25, was charged with aggravated assault, conspiracy and recklessly endangering another person, stemming from a September 2014 incident, in which Zachary Hesse and his boyfriend, Andrew Haught, were attacked by a group who hurled homophobic slurs as they beat them senseless. Both men ended up in the hospital, where Haught's jaw had to be wired shut.
Internet snoops discovered Knott had a history of racist and homophobic comments on social media.
Two other suspects, Kevin Harrigan, 26, and Philip Williams, 25, pled guilty.