Military Ties to Memphis Gay Center Arson as Second Man Arrested


A second man has been arrested in the attempt to set fire to the Gay Pride flag at the Memphis Gay and Lesbian Community Center on Wednesday. Police arrested one suspect, Ross Burton, at the scene, after a physical struggle with an officer.

The AP reports: "Police arrested the second suspect Thursday. He is Wesley Huggins. Burton is charged with assault and vandalism. Huggins is charged with
vandalism, assault and setting fire to personal property."

The Memphis Flyer reports that Burton is a member of the Memphis-based 164th airlift wing of the Tennessee Air National Guard. According to WMCTV, Huggins might be as well.


  1. Donovan says

    What’s shocking about this is not that a couple of military punks vandalized a gay centre – I don’t expect any better from the military – it’s that these military punks viciously fought against police officers. That won’t look good in the papers. It’s dangerously close to civil war.

  2. DairyQueen says

    Not suprised if they are from the military. They are just being lead by example from the Obama adminstation, that gays are less than straight people. By keeping DADT, these idiots think it’s OK to discriminate and destroy GLBT property, sense GLBT are not fit enough to die for our country.

  3. Dan says

    What saddens me about this news is that some right-wing conservative will use this as an example of why DADT is needed. They will of course raise these two men into anti-heroes and talk about how gays in the military will destroy military oneness.

  4. Shan says

    In regards to comment by Dairyqueen, remember DADT is Clinton…put the hate where it started. Maybe if we had a Republican in power you might be getting more of your rights back.

  5. Ryan says

    @ SHAN – get real!
    “Maybe if we had a Republican in power”… Are you HIGH Clarice???

    When we take a step back and look at who is fighting for gay rights in this country (besides the gays) – the first thing that pops into everyone’s mind is the Republicans.

    So are you saying that Maverick John & Caribou Barbie would have repealed DADT if they had been elected?

  6. says


    Yup, Clinton was a righteous pussy and a prick for signing DADT. He caved to the right so hard and stabbed all the rest of us in the back, but:

    “Maybe if we had a Republican in power you might be getting more of your rights back.”

    Ummm… not so much. ESPECIALLY if you’re talking about gay civil rights. Have you already forgot about the Federal Marriage Amendment, pushed so aggressively by our last republican Oval Office occupant? I don’t think that was intended to give ANYONE any rights (except the church and the right-wing is allowed to continue to abuse, berate, attack, and kill gays across this country with virtual impunity).

    The ‘Gay Panic’ defense still seems to work for these neanderthals…

  7. Honkey says

    These white churches are so homophobic. We need to start going in and educating them about homosexuality.

    They need educating.

  8. says

    Some of you are very short-sighted with your comments. Remember less than a couple of weeks ago when the young Harvard grad who set fire to a building holding 9/11 remains? Many people were complaining that his being gay shouldn’t have been even mentioned.

    Now that it comes out that the young guys in this case might be in the military, people start making wild connections and talking disparagingly about anyone connected with DADT.

    Call both events what they are: vandalism and arson caused by drunk/high guys. There’s no need to look further for a motive. Stupid stuff done by guys in an inebriated state takes place every night of the year. What these guys did in Memphis is no more homophobia than what the Harvard guy did is racism.

  9. Shan says

    Me again responding to the comments made to mine…I guess my sarcasm was lost to “Ryan” and “MikeinSanJose”… I am a registered Democrat and Union member. I am not giving Obama a free pass but when you have a two party system sometimes you have to take the best and work with them. Rome was not built in a day.

  10. John in Boston says

    I agree with marinerotx

    And Donovan said: ‘I don’t expect any better from the military’………

    — You’re ignorant

  11. paybackday says

    Ross Burton’s father is Colonel David Burton, the former COMMANDER of the 164th Airlift Wing!

  12. Lucy says

    Yall chill out. These boys were not trying to vandalize anything. MAny people know them in Memphis and know they were drunk and celebrating a birthday, and as stupid boys would, just though it would be funny to try to steal the flag. With no knife, they wanted to burn the rope to get it.

    Isnt it amazing how quickly people jump to conclusions?? And scary….