Fuck you United States! You suck! Chicago sucks most of all!
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Attorneys for a gay man who alleges Chicago police beat him in Uptown in March 2006 said Aug. 17 they plan to contest the City of Chicago’s motion that the man’s lawsuit be dismissed because gays aren’t entitled to equal protection under the U.S. Constitution.
Alexander Ruppert sued the City and two Chicago police officers after his arrest March 5, 2006. Ruppert alleges that after he was escorted out of the Uptown Lounge, on West Lawrence near Broadway, the two police officers got angry when he used his cell phone in the back seat of their police car as he was being driven to the 20th District police station.
According to Ruppert, the police officers stopped the car, pulled him out of the back seat and began beating him.
“They pulled me out of the car by my hair,” Ruppert says. “They were saying, ‘What the fuck are you doing, faggot?’ and calling me ‘Princess motherfucker.’ They said, ‘Get off the fucking phone, faggot.’”
Ruppert said he was hurt badly during the beating.
“I was bleeding pretty bad,” Ruppert says. “They threw me back into the car. I said, ‘I need medical treatment. I’ve got HIV and I’m bleeding all over the back of your car.’”
He said one of the officers then called an ambulance that took Ruppert to Weiss Memorial Hospital, where he received 16 stitches for a wound under his eye.
The police denied any wrongdoing.
But the City’s attorneys, in a motion filed in U.S. District Court, argue that Ruppert can’t claim that he was denied equal protection under the law, as he is doing, because gays aren’t covered under the Constitution’s equal protection clause.
“When we filed the equal protection count, we knew the federal government was behind the curve in recognizing that the equal protection clause should cover sexual orientation,” said attorney Michael Oppenheimer. “We expected more from the City of Chicago. The City’s position is an affront to all residents of this fine city.”
Oppenheimer’s partner, Jon Erickson, said the City’s position surprised him, given the ongoing effort to bring the 2016 Olympics to Chicago.
“The international community is far ahead in recognizing the equal rights of the gay community,” Erickson said. “To deny gay people equal protection under the law will not play well internationally.”
In court Aug. 21, Ruppert’s attorneys asked for and received an extension to argue against the City’s motion to dismiss the equal protection complaint. Judge Rebecca Pallmeyer granted the extension; both sides return to court Sept. 11.