4/15/2009

Casa Grande Police Threaten LGBT Protesters

IMG_3098Image by jessebucksc via Flickr

Earlier today as part of national Tax Day protests to bring attention to the disparities between LGBT couples' tax burdens and those of straight married couples, protests were held across the country. The protests involved dissemination of information on the tax disparity and visibility.

In Casa Grande, a planned protest was broken up by police from the city stating that "Rainbow flags" were illegal within the city limits of Casa Grande. They then proceeded to harrass LGBT protestors and threaten them with arrest.

Here is part of a note from Christopher Hall who organized the protest:

Today the Casa Grande Police Department broke up our demonstration.

Officer B. Walsh and his accomplice, who would not provide her name, informed us that our flag was not to be flown anywhere within the city of Casa Grande. Dana who was the owner of the flag, was threated to be arrested if it were flown again.

We were told that it was obstructing the view of the road for some individuals. We were more than willing to work with them. We had asked where we could stand and they said we could not stand anywhere.

Funny thing is, I had talked to the city and they said as long as we were on the sidewalk or 7 feet from it, there should not be a problem. Apparently there was. When I first confronted the police about the issue, they told me to get in touch with the city. Even though I did, they still enforced their “policy” and were hesitant to work with us in any way.

Another form of injustice happened when they took down the gay people’s information, but none of the straight people had to provide the police with their ssn, date of birth, photo id, etc. The gay population on the other hand had to.

Full details are at Rainbow Foot Soldiers . The protest was held on a street corner with vacant lot so that the street nor sidewalk would be obstructed by those gathered.


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