Over the weekend, a man named James Maxie went to church with his girlfriend… and ended up severely beating the pastor, Rev. Norman Hayes, after Hayes asked the girlfriend if she felt safe with him:
“I questioned his girlfriend in his presence if she felt safe,” Hayes said. “He was very, very upset that I’d even suggest that he would hurt her. Then he turned around and hurt me very badly.”
Hayes said Maxie was argumentative and confrontational during the service.
“It looked like he was looking for an argument,” Hayes said.
Maxie and the girlfriend, who attends the church, approached Hayes after the service. She told police that Hayes asked her if Maxie was abusing her, and Maxie became furious, striking pastor several times in the face in the church hallway.
“He came from nowhere and hit me … and knocked me down, and then he got on top of me and just kept hitting me over and over,” Hayes said. He pleaded for the beating to stop, stating he thought Maxie would kill him.
“It was fortunate he did stop,” Hayes said. “I really believe my life was in danger if he hadn’t stopped hitting me in the face over and over.”