Judge: Firefighters Case Ready to Go to Jury
The case involving firefighters suing the city of San Diego who say they were sexually harassed after being forced to ride in the city's Gay Pride parade has had enough testimony to go to the jury, Judge Michael Anello said yesterday: "It appears to the court that there's at least enough here to go to the jury on whether this was sexual harassment."
"Most of the case was presented before yesterday, when Aguirre called all eight of his witnesses. One of those giving testimony was paramedic Adrian Reyes, who said he rode an ambulance in the parade directly behind the engine carrying the four firefighters last year. He was asked if comments from the crowd – including 'You're so hot!' – offended him. 'No,' Reyes said. 'If anything, it was flattering.' Reyes said he didn't see any spectators approach the ambulance or the engine. 'Everybody was at least 10 feet away,' he said. 'No one came up and tried to shake my hand or touch me.'"
Last week, firefighter Alex Kane testified that following the parade he went through a sort of post-traumatic stress situation: "Kane, who has worked as a firefighter for six years, testified that he became the butt of jokes at the fire station. He also said the parade experience adversely affected his family life. 'I felt confused, embarrassed, used, abandoned by my leadership,' Kane said. 'I had to fight through it.' He said professional counseling has helped him overcome the distress. But toward the end of his testimony with LiMandri, Kane started to break down. He covered his face and asked for time to compose himself, and the judge granted him a break."
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