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Palm Springs City Council Unanimously Adopts Resolution Backing Same-Sex Marriage

Palmsprings

Palm Springs City Council made its support for same-sex marriage known on Wednesday with a unanimous vote for a resolution supporting it, the Desert Sun reports:

The resolution, passed 5-0 in the nearly packed council chambers, states the city supports the “right to full civil marriage equality for all residents of Palm Springs who wish to be married regardless of gender, gender identity, or sexual orientation.”

The vote makes Palm Springs the only city in the Coachella Valley to take such a formal stance, according to Equality California, a statewide lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender advocacy group.

The resolution has no legal standing but advocates hope it will persuade other city councils around the state to follow suit.

Watch a clip of public comments before the vote on the resolution including a statement of support from a local Christian couple, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "Palm Springs City Council Unanimously Adopts Resolution Backing Same-Sex Marriage" »


Judge Rules In Favor Of Palm Springs Police In Warm Sands Trial

Palmsprings
After a trial that lasted almost two weeks, a California judge this week refused to dismiss charges for 19 men arrested in the the Warm Sands sex sting operation, instead ruling in favor of the Palm Springs police department. Superior Court Judge David Downing said in his judgement: "These 19 men were not being arrested for being gay, they were arrested for having sex in a public place."

Ps "Downing said he sided with the prosecution despite revelations of 'derogatory' comments made during the police action by the former Palm Springs police chief and a sergeant in charge of the operation. 'Men were clearly engaging in public sex and the police could no longer ignore that,' Downing said. “Maybe they should have done it differently, but that's not my call.'”

"The decision came as a disappointing blow to the defense, which had argued that the sting was an example of the department's 'selective enforcement” against gays. 'I think evidence shows that the Palm Springs Police Department is obsessed with getting the gay guy,' said defense attorney Roger Tansey in court."

"The defense argued that while there have been numerous reports of public sex between heterosexuals in Palm Springs, 'straight people' had never been subjected to similar stings."

One of the defense attorneys claims that the police are simply anti-gay: "They are obsessed with getting the gay guys," attorney Roger Tansey said.  Another defense lawyer said no police records supported the idea that Warm Sands residents were complaining about men having gay sex in public, as police claimed after the June 2009 sting.

Last month, the city's Chief of Police David Dominguez resigned due to criticism he faced for using the phrase 'filthy motherf**kers' while referring to gay men involved in the sting operation.

Watch a KPSP report on the outcome of the trial, AFTER THE JUMP.

Continue reading "Judge Rules In Favor Of Palm Springs Police In Warm Sands Trial" »


News: Jonathan Knight, TV Pilots, Gay Jersey Shore, Greenland

 road Antoine Dodson gets a reality show pilot that will help explain "how a news story sparked a new life for him and his family."

Tiffjon  road 80's pop star Tiffany on dating NKOTB member Jonathan Knight: "He turned gay later. I didn't do it, but he's fabulous, though. I had issues with that. I was thinking that I did. But, no...Now looking back while we were dating. He was so much fun. We used to do facials together. He was so easy to talk to."

 road Is Prince William's balding the real reason behind his engagement?

 road Robert Vander Plaats continues his hateful "Capturing the Momentum Tour" in Iowa: "We want to have a marriage amendment that the people of Iowa can vote on. We'd like to re-affirm the Defensive Marriage Act. We would like to change the selection process for judges to the Supreme Court. And we'd love to see the other four resign."

 road Twitter's involvement in the recent government turmoil in Tunisia.

 road NBC picks up lesbian sit-com pilot called I Hate That I Love You: "It's from Will and Grace alum Jhoni Marchenko, and the logline is certainly eye-catching: 'A straight couple introduces two of its lesbian friends to one another and what results is both instant attraction and a pregnancy.'"

 road More TV pilot news: thanks to NBC, David E. Kelley's Wonder Woman pilot will get a shot at being a network series after all.

Alex  road So-called new "It" boy Alex Pettyfer goes for a run in LA.

 road Palm Springs Sergent explains to the court that he used an anti-gay slur during a gay sex sting operation so it would serve as an "icebreaker" for his officers.

 road Record ice melt: "The 2010 runoff was more than twice the average annual loss in Greenland over the previous three decades, surpassing a record set in 2007."

 road Gender-Neutral toilets cause stir in Brazil.

 road Rob Lowe buys a round of drinks at a gay bar in the latest episode of "Parks and Recreation."

 road I guess it was only a matter of time: casting is currently underway for a gay version of Jersey Shore called "Under the Boardwalk."

 road Gay couple in Philadelphia claim police brutality: “I kept telling him how much it was hurting and he just said, ‘Shut up, pussy faggot.’ I closed my eyes and all I could hear was Jason screaming. And I told him I have a dislocated wrist, and he said, ‘Shut the fuck up, or you’ll have a broken wrist.’ He said, ‘Let me hear you squeal, faggot.’"


Palm Springs Police Chief Resigns Over Remarks Made During Sting Targeting Gay Men

Palm Springs Police Chief David Dominguez resigned today over remarks he made during a sting operation targeting gay men in the city's Warm Sands neighborhood in 2009, the Southwest Riverside News Network reports

Dominguez Dominguez came under fire after a June 2009 operation in the Warm Sands neighborhood. The sting, which netted 19 arrests, was done in response to what police said were complaints about drug use, public sex and prostitution in Warm Sands. However, it drew complaints that police were targeting gay men unfairly.

During a pretrial hearing, one defendant said a police officer could be heard using a gay slur on a video recording in an undercover vehicle. An attorney for some of those arrested said Dominguez was in that particular car.

The lawyer lodged a complaint, alleging Dominguez disparaged the arrestees to his officers.

“What a bunch of filthy mother (expletive),” Dominguez allegedly said. “You guys should get paid extra for this.”

As Steve reported last week, "According to court documents, Dominguez used the phrase 'filthy motherf**kers' while another officer involved in the sting was overheard using the slur 'c**ksuckers.'"

Dominguez also apologized last week, but issued this statement today: "“After careful consideration of the events surrounding the Warm Sands undercover operation, I believe this decision is in the best interest of my family, the city and the Police Department."


Palm Springs Police Chief Apologizes For Homophobic Remarks

Yesterday, Palm Springs Police Chief David Dominguez publicly apologized for homophobic remarks he made during a sex sting operation that targeted gay men in that city.

David_dominguez Valley News reports on exactly what Dominguez was caught saying: "What a bunch of filthy mother (expletive). You guys should get paid extra for this."

According to court documents, Dominguez used the phrase "filthy motherf**kers” while another officer involved in the sting was overheard using the slur "c**ksuckers."

It took Dominguez a few months (and a couple of denials) but he has now apologized: "An inappropriate comment made by me did not display the utmost professional conduct expected from the chief of police and I sincerely apologize to the community at large."

The apology came only after City Manager David Ready released a memo to the Palm Springs City Council that criticizes the way in which the stings were conducted: “Portions of the operation were not conducted according to the professional standards that are expected of our Police Department. As a result, appropriate disciplinary and correction action has already been taken.”

Valley News provides more information about the findings: "In the city's report, Ready said police should have reached out to hoteliers, businesses and residents to warn them about the sting operation. He suggested the sting could have been done with surveillance instead of undercover decoys."

You may recall that the sting operation caused quite an stir among the city's gay community over the summer. The undercover operation targeted gay men involved in public sex and were charged under a harsh and unusual section of the Penal Code that would require them to register as sex offenders for life.


Gay Stories: A Gay City Councilman Talks About Moving His Family and Adopted Daughter to Higher Ground

Hines

NATHAN MANSKE

Guestblogger Nathan Manske and Marquise Lee are halfway though a 3 month trip around the United States collecting stories for their I'm From Driftwood site. We're finally ready to start catching up with some of the stories collected over the first half of the trip along with some of the insight into what they're seeing now. Anyone can submit their own story via IFD.

Driftwood We had made our way to Palm Springs, CA, a gay mecca in the middle of the desert, where it supposedly rains only 7 days out of the year. As our weather luck, or lack thereof, would have it, the rain fell and fell some more for the entirety of our only full day there, flooding most of the streets in the flat terrain. But our spirits wouldn't be dampened because we would soon be getting a story from Scott Hines, the openly gay city councilman of nearby and much-more-conservative-than-you'd-think Rancho Mirage.

The rain had finally stopped the next day but the streets were still flooded. After navigating and hydroplaning our way to Rancho Mirage, we met Scott at City Hall. My first impression was how handsome he was and how firm of a handshake he gave. I quickly went from swooning to fuming, however, after hearing his story about gay adoption and the sacrifices his family had to make because of anti-LGBT adoption laws in his previous home state of Tennessee. Of course I support gay adoption, of course I'm against anti-gay ballots and measures and propositions and referendums, but until you put a face or a person or a story with an issue, it's just an ideal. Meeting Scott and hearing about his family made it personal. I hope it does for other folks as well.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

Additionally, the IFD boys arrive in NYC this weekend. The crew will be having a Reading Event+Screening on Friday, December 10 at the LGBT Center on 13th St., Room 310. They will talk about their adventure on the road as well as show some of the Video Stories they've collected. There will be a live story reading by NYC native Jay Blotcher and an introduction by OutQ Radio Host Michelangelo Signorile.

Previously in this series...
A Survivor's Account of an Unbelievable Hell Called Home [tr]
A Mayor's Coming Out [tr]

Continue reading "Gay Stories: A Gay City Councilman Talks About Moving His Family and Adopted Daughter to Higher Ground" »


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