If you know what's good for you, don't use the word "nigger" around anyone -- but especially not around Carlos Gross, who allegedly beat a Mesa man with a baseball bat after he claims the man dropped an N-bomb while the two were chatting in the parking lot of a gas station Sunday night.
According to court records obtained by New Times, Gross and the victim are acquaintances who bump into each other on the streets every now and again.
About 11:30 Sunday night, Gross drove his red pickup truck to a convenience store at 816 West University Drive in Mesa where he bumped into the victim, who was talking to the clerk outside of the store.
According to the victim, he apparently knows that Gross has problems with drugs, and asked him why he started using again.
This, apparently, pissed off Gross, who the victim claims called him a "cracker" before getting out of his vehicle and grabbing an aluminum baseball bat from the back of the truck. The victim says Gross then walked towards him and hit him in the shoulder with the bat.
The victim yelled for the store clerk to call police, but not before Gross hit him two or three more times in the head.
The police arrived shortly after the attack. They found Gross in his truck at a nearby convenience store -- with the bat still in the back of the truck -- and he was taken into custody.
We Believe Local Journalism is Critical to the Life of a City
Engaging with our readers is essential to Phoenix New Times's mission. Make a financial contribution or sign up for a newsletter, and help us keep telling Phoenix's stories with no paywalls.
Support Our Journalism
Gross' account of what happened is slightly different from the victim's -- according to Gross, the victim called him a "nigger," so he had to "handle things" instead of just walking away.
He admitted to beating the victim with the bat, and told officers he "was in no way concerned for the well being of the victim," which is why he didn't call for paramedics.
The victim was taken to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
Gross was booked into a Maricopa County jail on one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.