Couple Steven Ondo and Jonathan Simcox
have filed a lawsuit against the city of Cleveland and its police for
discriminating against them because they are gay.
The couple claims they were called
anti-gay slurs and humiliated by police officers.
Last April, the couple was approached
by an off-duty officer, who was a neighbor, irked by their noisy
argument on the street. The officer physically attacked the pair and
had them arrested. A SWAT team arrested the men a week later at
5:30AM in their home and denied them a chance to get their pants.
A charge of assaulting an officer was
dismissed on October 20.
Ondo, 22, and Simcox, 25, claim that
officers repeatedly referred to them as “faggots” and said
“faggots don't get to wear pants to jail” during their second
arrest. They remained without pants as police drove around making
other arrests and while in jail for at least one day.
“They were humiliated and
embarrassed,” attorney Dan Chaplin told the AP. “They were
shackled to strangers while they were in their underwear and they
couldn't leave. And the other guys that were arrested were allowed
to get clothes on.”
“It was just a real old-fashioned gay
bashing by the Cleveland police department,” he added. (A video
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