The meeting was a gathering of Ferguson-based protesters and the agenda was how to conduct future demonstrations. When Schaefer — a senior at the University of Missouri, St. Louis — arrived, he was told he couldn’t live video stream the meeting. The rule struck him as “suspicious,” but in a conversation with BuzzFeed News Friday he said he sat down and obeyed it anyway. And for the next 40 minutes, nothing happened.

At some point, however, Schaefer noticed the people around him moving away “very discreetly.” Then a man he didn’t know sprang into action.

“All of the sudden one guy ran up to me and pointed and said he’s live streaming. Four others joined him,” Schaefer said. “They slammed me against the exit door of the church, so I stumbled out. The guy who was in the front hit me a couple times in the face. I fell to the ground and I was stunned.”

The beating didn’t stop there. Schaefer said the men continued kicking and hitting him as he tried to shield himself with his arms.