Max Pelofske, a 21-year-old gay Minnesotan man, says a group of men assaulted him after he was asked if he is gay.

Pelofske of Duluth told the Duluth News Tribune that the incident occurred at a graduation party held at an abandoned gravel pit and attended by roughly 50 people.

Within 5 minutes of arriving at the party with his friend, Kelly Johnson, he was asked by a young man his sexual orientation.

“He told me to look him in the eyes, and I was really confused because I'd never seen the guy before,” he said. “He asked me, 'Are you gay?' And I said, 'Yes. Is that OK?'”

Pelofske said he was struck in the head by a flying beer can and that a group of at least 9 young men joined in kicking and punching him.

“I tried to get up, but I kept getting knocked back down,” he said, then added: “They were trying to throw me into the fire.”

He said the beating lasted anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes before he managed to escape and call for help.

At least one person attending the party accused Pelofske of instigating the altercation by stealing drinks from people.

Johnson, however, backed up Pelofske's version of events.

Police have arrested two men – ages 18 and 19 – who have yet to be charged.

Pelofske, who initially refused treatment because he does not have health insurance, said his ribs are bruised and his face is swollen.