Bethea's Byte
A Cop Was Told to ‘Tone Down Your Gayness.’ Now, He Could Get Nearly $20 million, Jury Says. Hizmr
Welcome to Bethea's Byte. If you are a member, please sign in and participate. If you are not a member, please sign up and join the conversation. We'd love to hear from you.
Bethea's Byte
Would you like to react to this message? Create an account in a few clicks or log in to continue.
Log in

I forgot my password

    Who is online?
    In total there are 5 users online :: 1 Registered, 0 Hidden and 4 Guests :: 1 Bot

    The Last Outlaw

    [ View the whole list ]

    Most users ever online was 156 on Wed Jul 03, 2019 11:22 am
    Recent Members
    See more
    We have 38 registered users
    The newest registered user is Jarkko

    Our users have posted a total of 4474 messages in 2053 subjects
    May 2022

    Calendar Calendar

    Affiliate With Bethea’s Byte

    Bethea's Byte

    Anti-Spam Bots!

    Submit Your Site To The Web's Top 50 Search Engines for Free!

    The Coffee House

    Planet Nexus

    BG Music

    A Cop Was Told to ‘Tone Down Your Gayness.’ Now, He Could Get Nearly $20 million, Jury Says.

    View previous topic View next topic Go down

    The Last Outlaw
    The Last Outlaw
    Head Administrator
    Head Administrator
    Location : Salem, Oregon
    Gender : Male
    Posts : 2611 Zodiac Sign : Aquarius Age : 46 Birthday : 1976-02-07
    Join date : 2018-05-25
    Status :

    PostThe Last Outlaw Mon Oct 28, 2019 10:38 am

    A Cop Was Told to ‘Tone Down Your Gayness.’ Now, He Could Get Nearly $20 million, Jury Says. I5Bn3

    From The Washington Post

    Allyson Chiu of The Washington Post wrote:St. Louis County Police Department Sgt. Keith Wildhaber had more than 15 years of experience on the force when he applied for a promotion in 2014, and by all accounts, he was a strong candidate. But shortly after Wildhaber applied, he said he was informed that there was one thing standing in his way of becoming a lieutenant: his sexual orientation.

    A Cop Was Told to ‘Tone Down Your Gayness.’ Now, He Could Get Nearly $20 million, Jury Says. $

    “The command staff has a problem with your sexuality,” a member of the St. Louis County Board of Police Commissioners allegedly told Wildhaber in February 2014. “If you ever want to see a white shirt [i.e., get a promotion], you should tone down your gayness.”

    A jury recently sided with Wildhaber, who filed a discrimination lawsuit against St. Louis County in 2017, awarding him nearly $20 million on Friday — a judgment intended to “send a message,” the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

    County officials have heard the jurors’ message and now plan to take action, starting with the police department’s leadership.

    “The time for leadership changes has come and change must start at the top,” St. Louis County Executive Sam Page said in a statement Sunday. Page said the process would begin with overhauling the police board, which oversees the police chief, adding that an announcement on the new appointments is “forthcoming.”

    An attorney for Wildhaber did not respond to a request for comment late Sunday. The police department also could not be reached. The county’s police union said in a statement to KMOV that it has “a long history of fighting for equality for all of our members.”

    “While we are extremely embarrassed of the alleged actions of some of our Department’s senior commanders, we look forward to the healing process that can begin to take place now that this has been heard in open court,” the statement said.

    The jury’s decision marked the end of a week-long trial during which the police department was accused of having an anti-LGBT culture and a history of retaliation that ultimately led to Wildhaber being passed up for promotions 23 times, the Post-Dispatch reported. St. Louis County Police Chief Jon Belmar and other members of the department denied the allegations of discrimination in testimony, but jurors decided in favor of Wildhaber.

    “We wanted to send a message,” the jury foreman told reporters, according to the Post-Dispatch. “If you discriminate you are going to pay a big price. … You can’t defend the indefensible.”

    Wildhaber joined the department as a security officer in 1994 after spending four years in the U.S. Army, the lawsuit said. He became a police officer in 1997 and rose through the department’s ranks, working as a patrolman and then a detective until 2011, when he was promoted to the rank of sergeant.

    Three years later, Wildhaber, who had a clean disciplinary record and positive performance reviews, set his sights on lieutenant, according to the complaint. Wildhaber’s scores from a written test and another unspecified assessment ranked him third out of the 26 candidates vying for the position, placing him in a group of officers “considered to be first in line for promotions,” the suit said.

    Then, while visiting a restaurant in February 2014 on a routine check, Wildhaber ran into John Saracino, who was a member of the county police board, the lawsuit said. That’s when Wildhaber alleged that Saracino made the remark about his “gayness.”

    “I think I said, ‘I can’t believe we are having this conversation in 2014.’ It was devastating to hear,” Wildhaber testified Wednesday, according to the Post-Dispatch. “We had never spoken of my sexuality before, and I thought he was just trying to be helpful to me and looking out for my best interest in the promotional process.”

    Saracino has denied that the conversation between him and Wildhaber ever took place, telling the Post-Dispatch in 2017, “I would never say anything like that.”

    Still, the lawsuit alleged that Wildhaber, who continued to apply for open lieutenant positions, remained a sergeant while his colleagues were promoted.

    In April 2016, Wildhaber filed a discrimination complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and the Missouri Commission on Human Rights, alleging that the county had “failed to promote him based on his sex/gender,” according to the lawsuit.

    Instead of being promoted, in May that year Wildhaber says he was transferred to another precinct roughly 27 miles from his home, where he was assigned to work 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. Before filing the complaint, Wildhaber had been working the afternoon shift much closer to home, the suit said. Not long after his transfer, Wildhaber submitted a second complaint, this time tacking on a retaliation charge.

    The suit alleged that Wildhaber was denied promotions because his “behavior, mannerisms, and/or appearance do not fit the stereotypical norms of what a ‘male’ should be.” It also alleged that switching Wildhaber to “an undesirable shift at an undesirable work location” after he filed the complaints amounted to retaliation.

    During last week’s trial, Wildhaber’s attorneys called witnesses who testified that higher-ranking officers had either made inappropriate comments about the police sergeant or about members of the LGBT community in general.

    One witness recalled a captain describing Wildhaber as “fruity” at an event in April 2015, according to the Post-Dispatch. The captain went on to say that Wildhaber was “way too out there with his gayness and he needed to tone it down” if he wanted to be promoted.

    But another witness, who at one point was an executive assistant to Deputy Chief of Police Kenneth Gregory, said the department’s poor treatment of LGBT employees goes beyond Wildhaber. The witness said she once heard Gregory tell a commander that the Bible says homosexuality is “an abomination,” the Post-Dispatch reported. The witness told jurors that when her colleagues learned she identified as gay, she too experienced “harassment, humiliation and embarrassment almost daily.”

    On Sunday, St. Louis County leaders stressed that change is necessary to prevent future incidents. Councilwoman Lisa Clancy (D) also called for Belmar to resign.

    “It is clear to me that there is a rampant culture of homophobia and also racism,” Clancy told KSDK. “The council hears about this almost every week at our council meetings, but also within the community, that there’s a lot of issues within our police department right now.”

    Page did not specify Sunday whether Belmar would remain in his position, only noting that the chief and the current police board had “served the county faithfully for years.”

    I have to agree with the jury foreman in this case when he said, "If you discriminate you are going to pay a big price."  Here we are in 2019 and discrimination on any level is STILL unacceptable.

    Just Saying.
    A Cop Was Told to ‘Tone Down Your Gayness.’ Now, He Could Get Nearly $20 million, Jury Says. I6goy

    A Cop Was Told to ‘Tone Down Your Gayness.’ Now, He Could Get Nearly $20 million, Jury Says. Ro5An
    A Cop Was Told to ‘Tone Down Your Gayness.’ Now, He Could Get Nearly $20 million, Jury Says. RhD4cA Cop Was Told to ‘Tone Down Your Gayness.’ Now, He Could Get Nearly $20 million, Jury Says. RhfbI

    UFC Fight Night 192: Smith vs. Spann
    Contributing Manager
    Contributing Manager
    Posts : 614 Join date : 2018-05-30
    Status :

    PostKyng Tue Oct 29, 2019 4:21 pm

    Wow, sad to see that this is still a thing in this day and age Sad . Much like the military, being a cop doesn't require you to be straight: it just requires you to shoot straight.

    Good luck to him in the rest of his career - and I hope he doesn't face this discrimination again >_< .

    View previous topic View next topic Back to top

    Create an account or log in to leave a reply

    You need to be a member in order to leave a reply.

    Create an account

    Join our community by creating a new account. It's easy!

    Create a new account

    Log in

    Already have an account? No problem, log in here.

    Log in

    Permissions in this forum:
    You cannot reply to topics in this forum