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Dominican cardinal calls married gay U.S. ambassador ‘wife’

James “Wally” Brewster tied knot in 2013

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Wally Brewster, Dominican Republic, gay news, Washington Blade

Wally Brewster, Dominican Republic, gay news, Washington Blade

U.S. Ambassador to the Dominican Republic James “Wally” Brewster, left, and his husband, Bob Satawake, at their official residence in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, in June 2015. (Washington Blade photo by Michael K. Lavers)

Dominican LGBT rights advocates have blasted a Catholic cardinal for referring to the married gay U.S. ambassador to their country as a “wife.”

Listín Diario, a Dominican newspaper, reported that Cardinal Nicolás de Jesús López Rodríguez of the Archdiocese of Santo Domingo made the comment about James “Wally” Brewster on Tuesday during a press conference with reporters.

“This man needs to go back to his embassy,” said López. “He should stick to housework, since he is a man’s wife.”

Brewster married his longtime partner, Bob Satawake, in 2013 on the same day that Vice President Biden swore him in as ambassador.

Listín Diario reported that López reiterated his previous criticisms that the U.S. sent Brewster to the predominantly Catholic country in order to promote an LGBT-specific agenda.

Cardinal previously used anti-gay slur to describe ambassador

López made his comments less than a week after Brewster publicly criticized corruption in the Dominican Republic.

The Archdiocese of Santo Domingo did not respond to the Washington Blade’s request for comment. Brewster and Satawake discussed López’s comments in an interview with a Dominican television station that is scheduled to air on Thursday.

The outspoken cardinal in 2013 referred to Brewster as a “faggot” during a Santo Domingo press conference. López has also described gay tourists who visit the Dominican capital’s old city as “social trash” and “degenerates.”

“The ecclesiastical representation of the Catholic Church in the Dominican Republic continues to perpetuate homophobia in the country, and violence against women by relegating them to housework,” Rosanna Marzan, director of Diversidad Dominicana, a Dominican LGBT advocacy group, told the Blade on Wednesday in an email. “This man [López] should stop meddling in the private affairs of people, with his continuous speech that perpetuates discrimination against people of a different sexuality.”

Deivis Ventura, coordinator of the Amigos Siempre Amigos Network of Volunteers, a Dominican advocacy group, is a candidate for the Santo Domingo Municipal Council.

He echoed Marzan’s criticisms of López.

“He uses rhetorical expressions to demonstrate his opposition to the U.S. ambassador’s pronouncements,” Ventura told the Blade on Wednesday. “[His] insulting words show his lack of understanding of his role as a pastor in the Catholic church.”

Brewster is one of six openly gay ambassadors who represent the U.S. overseas.

“One of the key things that I want to continue to focus on as Bob and I have is to show that we’re a loving couple and we are gay,” Brewster told the Blade in June during an interview at his official residence in Santo Domingo as Satawake listened. “We are out there talking about relationships, talking about our faith and really representing the American people in a way that I think continues to promote our values.”

Cardenal Nicolás de Jesús López, Gay News, Washington Blade

Cardenal Nicolás de Jesús López Ródriguez of the Archdiocese of Santo Domingo. (Photo via Wikimedia Commons by Starus)

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26 Comments

26 Comments

  1. Steve Kay

    December 3, 2015 at 12:20 am

    How many child molesters is he hiding? scumbag – and bet pope francis wont put him in the dustbin of history. He did at least with cardinal keith obrien who was doing in appropriate touching and worse. Obrien lived in scotland and his malfeasance helped lead to a 105 to 18 vote for = marrriage in scotland last year

    • Carlos Lantigua

      December 3, 2015 at 12:40 pm

      LONG LIVE OUR CARDINAL LOPEZ RODRIGUEZ!, Brewstwr insulted all
      Dominicans saying he had right to meddle in the Dominican issues and
      those who dont agree return the USA visas.

      • betty

        December 3, 2015 at 7:39 pm

        Go home to your shithole country, taco.

      • NORMAN DOSTAL

        December 3, 2015 at 8:12 pm

        yeah-go home, you POS

  2. Hugh1

    December 3, 2015 at 1:57 am

    Our gilded gal cleric, Cardenal Nicolás de Jesús López Ródriguez, of the Archdiocese of Santo Domingo, has issues. Is that a feather duster in his right hand? He wouldn’t be my first choice for babysitter.

  3. Carlos Lantigua

    December 3, 2015 at 12:40 pm

    LONG LIVE OUR CARDINAL LOPEZ RODRIGUEZ!, Brewstwr insulted all Dominicans saying he had right to meddle in the Dominican issues and those who dont agree return the US visas.

    • NORMAN DOSTAL

      December 3, 2015 at 8:11 pm

      Shut up, idiot-a gay man calling another gay man a woman is moronic

    • Erica Cook

      December 3, 2015 at 8:12 pm

      So you say Brewstwr insulted your cardinal. I honestly can’t say if he did or not, though it seems to me the fact that we are alive is considered an insult to him. But let’s just say he did. Are you saying that Jesus taught that when one says or does something insulting you should take it up a notch and insult them more? I know you monotheists believe that respect is only due to you and other people aren’t even deserving of live, but are you really sure that’s what Jesus taught. Unlike many Christians and Catholics, I’ve read the bible, and that’s not what he said. I guess, “turn the other cheek” only applies to the other person.

      • squishee

        December 5, 2015 at 7:13 am

        Our Blessed Lord called people sinners, sons of Satan, brood of vipers, sons of perdition, men deserving of being drowned in the sea with millstone about their necks, men who would wish they had never been born, whitewashed tombs full of dead men’s bones, weeds among the wheat… Obviously you missed those parts. Or you may have been sick the day that catechism was taught.

        • Erica Cook

          December 10, 2015 at 9:00 pm

          isn’t it really amazing how all the sins you don’t like are that bad, and the one’s you do every day are okay, and will be forgiven? I am always suspicious of people who’s religions justify their own hate. I mean your people brake all the 10 commandments in the process of fighting us, but that’s okay. The 10 most important laws don’t come close to how important it is to hurt people you find icky.

      • watching_rome_burn

        December 23, 2015 at 1:05 am

        Yeah — well, no … this is a backhanded slur against the Christian beliefs. You may have noticed they sure don’t send any openly gay ambassadors to Muslim countries, particularly those places living under the Sharia that might subject gays to such penalties as flogging or execution. If you want to get upset about other people’s sincerely held beliefs, then at least be consistent!

        • Erica Cook

          January 14, 2016 at 8:12 pm

          so, a backhanded slurr is worse than a direct verbal assault. It sounds like you Christians need a thicker skin. I mean you consider having to do your job to be oppression. No one is even being killed, no one is being kicked out of their homes, or killed by their parents. No one is even being landed in the hospital. I mean, you’re saying someone’s existence is an offense to you. Frankly, your version of being offended or oppressed sounds like a pretty damned nice and pretty peaceful day off from the realities of being a minority to me. Can I have a day off in your oppression some time? It’d be nice to not hear about another child killed by their parents, driven to suicide, another woman gang raped, or burned alive.

    • Titan

      December 9, 2015 at 6:56 pm

      Long live!, because he seems to be the only one in the DR who has the cojones to stand up against such despicable form depravity and lifestyle.

  4. squishee

    December 3, 2015 at 6:00 pm

    His Eminence is correct. If the fellow wants to live and act like a woman he should be treated as one. Thank the Lord for a bishop to stand up and shout the truth. The next thing he should do is root out and dismiss all the homosexual priests who are responsible for child rape.

    • NORMAN DOSTAL

      December 3, 2015 at 8:13 pm

      youre defending a celibate self hating gay man, you pathetic turd-idiot-=don’t breed

      • squishee

        December 5, 2015 at 7:02 am

        How do you know he is a homosexual? That is being awfully judgemental is it not? And, yes, I am a pathetic turd-idiot. God bless you too. And it is too late to request that I not breed, as I am the progenitor of 10 for starters. Probably been breeding since before you were on this planet.

        • NORMAN DOSTAL

          December 8, 2015 at 3:51 pm

          because only self hating gay men become priests or cardinals or popes-duuuuh-you think its normal to be celibate? ten? my god, your wife’s vag is just a clown car…yuck

          • squishee

            December 8, 2015 at 5:18 pm

            I was waiting for the venom and insults. You demons are becoming very tiresome and predictable. Quite bilious and boring.

          • NORMAN DOSTAL

            December 8, 2015 at 8:16 pm

            demons? what a silly retard. So glad your pathetic vile kind is dying off in this country. Must be scary huh? Gays and women and blacks now have full equality and you cant do shiit about it. Your own kids think youre a bigoted old dinosaur. Your time is over, shiit stain-now begone! We won this war-there is no reason to even communicate with you-youre beneath contempt.

  5. J. Boanerges

    December 3, 2015 at 6:34 pm

    LONG LIVE OUR CARDINAL LOPEZ RODRIGUEZ!

    • NORMAN DOSTAL

      December 8, 2015 at 8:17 pm

      no-hes a bigot and will burn in hell for this outrage

  6. NORMAN DOSTAL

    December 3, 2015 at 8:11 pm

    wait a sec-that self hating religious gay man called a brave openly gay man a woman? Dude-stfu and stop wearing dresses!!

  7. Jeff Jenness

    December 4, 2015 at 10:47 pm

    Cardinal Nicolás de Jesús López Rodríguez of the Archdiocese of Santo Domingo – ANTI GOD NEEDS TO READ BIBLE AND LEARN SOMETHING! ONE HE AND OTHERS MIGHT AS WELL LEARN TO DEAL WITH THE GAYS CAUSE THERE ARE GOING TO BE GAYS IN HEAVEN THAT IS JUST PURE LOGICAL FACT IF YOU BELEIVE IN THE BIBLE AND THE POWER OF THE BLOOD OF CHRIST! THERE ARE LOTS OF BAPTIZED GAYS. UNLESS YOU BELEIVE GOD IS DISCRIMINATING AND LIED ABOUT THE WHOLE FORGIVENESS OF SINS THING!!! AND GOD LIED ABOUT NOT ONE SIN NOT EVEN BEING GAY IS BIGGER THAN CHEATING ON A TEST, OR HAVING SEX WITH A WOMEN ON THEIR PERIOD, OR HAVING SEX BEFORE MARIAGE, OR WEARING CLOTH MADE OF TWO KINDS OF CLOTH OR EATING MEAT RARE, OR LIEING TO YOUR BOSS, UNLESS THE CARDINAL RODRIQUEZ IS PERFECT AND NEVER SINNED HE HAS NO ROOM TO TALK!! HE WHO IS WITH OUT SIN THROW THE FIRST STONE! NOW WE ALL KNOW THE CARDINAL HAS SINNED AND WILL SIN BEFORE HE DIES. IT IS ALSO SAID YOU WILL BE JUDGED AS YOU JUDGED OTHERS AND GIVEN THAT SENTENCE THAT YOU THINK OTHERS SHOULD HAVE FOR THEIR SIN. SO BASICALY IF YA JUDGE AND THINK THE OTHER GUY GOING TO HELL FOR HIS SINS YA MIGHT FIND YOUR THEIR INSTEAD WITH THE OTHER GUY LOOKING DOWN AT YOU FROM HEAVEN! (JUDGE A GAY AND THINK THEY GOING TO HELL WELL THAT GAY GUY MIGHT BE LOOKING DOWN AT YOU FROM HEAVEN WHILE YOU BURN IN HELL) READ YOUR BIBLE WORKING IN CHURCH DONT CHANGE THE RULES THEY STILL APPLY TO THE CARDINAL!

    • watching_rome_burn

      December 23, 2015 at 1:16 am

      Dude, I think your caps lock is on … or is that supposed to give you some special authority? Hate to be the one to break it to you, but WE ALL HAVE CAPS LOCK ON OUR MACHINES!!!

  8. watching_rome_burn

    December 23, 2015 at 1:12 am

    Do you feel equally bad for children being raised in the Muslim faith, a religion that generates laws that subject homosexuals to flogging, stoning, or other more creative executions? If you plan on ranting and raving broaden your scope or risk always exposing your own narrow minded prejudices.

    • NORMAN DOSTAL

      December 23, 2015 at 1:56 pm

      sure-all religion is abuse. But most people are ok with gays (as opposed to the leaders of said religions)-and every year more countries accept them. Turns out gays are real and gods aren’t. This article is about Catholic bigotry, dumdum-keep up!

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Equality Act, contorted as a danger by anti-LGBTQ forces, is all but dead

No political willpower to force vote or reach a compromise

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Despite having President Biden in the White House and Democratic majorities in both chambers of Congress, efforts to update federal civil rights laws to strengthen the prohibition on discrimination against LGBTQ people by passing the Equality Act are all but dead as opponents of the measure have contorted it beyond recognition.

Political willpower is lacking to find a compromise that would be acceptable to enough Republican senators to end a filibuster on the bill — a tall order in any event — nor is there the willpower to force a vote on the Equality Act as opponents stoke fears about transgender kids in sports and not even unanimity in the Democratic caucus in favor of the bill is present, stakeholders who spoke to the Blade on condition of anonymity said.

In fact, there are no imminent plans to hold a vote on the legislation even though Pride month is days away, which would be an opportune time for Congress to demonstrate solidarity with the LGBTQ community by holding a vote on the legislation.

If the Equality Act were to come up for a Senate vote in the next month, it would not have the support to pass. Continued assurances that bipartisan talks are continuing on the legislation have yielded no evidence of additional support, let alone the 10 Republicans needed to end a filibuster.

“I haven’t really heard an update either way, which is usually not good,” one Democratic insider said. “My understanding is that our side was entrenched in a no-compromise mindset and with [Sen. Joe] Manchin saying he didn’t like the bill, it doomed it this Congress. And the bullying of hundreds of trans athletes derailed our message and our arguments of why it was broadly needed.”

The only thing keeping the final nail from being hammered into the Equality Act’s coffin is the unwillingness of its supporters to admit defeat. Other stakeholders who spoke to the Blade continued to assert bipartisan talks are ongoing, strongly pushing back on any conclusion the legislation is dead.

Alphonso David, president of the Human Rights Campaign, said the Equality Act is “alive and well,” citing widespread public support he said includes “the majority of Democrats, Republicans and independents and a growing number of communities across the country engaging and mobilizing every day in support of the legislation.”

“They understand the urgent need to pass this bill and stand up for LGBTQ people across our country,” David added. “As we engage with elected officials, we have confidence that Congress will listen to the voices of their constituents and continue fighting for the Equality Act through the lengthy legislative process.  We will also continue our unprecedented campaign to grow the already-high public support for a popular bill that will save lives and make our country fairer and more equal for all. We will not stop until the Equality Act is passed.”

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), chief sponsor of the Equality Act in the Senate, also signaled through a spokesperson work continues on the legislation, refusing to give up on expectations the legislation would soon become law.

“Sen. Merkley and his staff are in active discussions with colleagues on both sides of the aisle to try to get this done,” McLennan said. “We definitely see it as a key priority that we expect to become law.”

A spokesperson Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), who had promised to force a vote on the Equality Act in the Senate on the day the U.S. House approved it earlier this year, pointed to a March 25 “Dear Colleague” letter in which he identified the Equality Act as one of several bills he’d bring up for a vote.

Despite any assurances, the hold up on the bill is apparent. Although the U.S. House approved the legislation earlier this year, the Senate Judiciary Committee hasn’t even reported out the bill yet to the floor in the aftermath of the first-ever Senate hearing on the bill in March. A Senate Judiciary Committee Democratic aide, however, disputed that inaction as evidence the Equality Act is dead in its tracks: “Bipartisan efforts on a path forward are ongoing.”

Democrats are quick to blame Republicans for inaction on the Equality Act, but with Manchin withholding his support for the legislation they can’t even count on the entirety of their caucus to vote “yes” if it came to the floor. Progressives continue to advocate an end to the filibuster to advance legislation Biden has promised as part of his agenda, but even if they were to overcome headwinds and dismantle the institution needing 60 votes to advance legislation, the Equality Act would likely not have majority support to win approval in the Senate with a 50-50 party split.

The office of Manchin, who has previously said he couldn’t support the Equality Act over concerns about public schools having to implement the transgender protections applying to sports and bathrooms, hasn’t responded to multiple requests this year from the Blade on the legislation and didn’t respond to a request to comment for this article.

Meanwhile, Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who declined to co-sponsor the Equality Act this year after having signed onto the legislation in the previous Congress, insisted through a spokesperson talks are still happening across the aisle despite the appearances the legislation is dead.

“There continues to be bipartisan support for passing a law that protects the civil rights of Americans, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” said Annie Clark, a Collins spokesperson. “The Equality Act was a starting point for negotiations, and in its current form, it cannot pass. That’s why there are ongoing discussions among senators and stakeholders about a path forward.”

Let’s face it: Anti-LGBTQ forces have railroaded the debate by making the Equality Act about an end to women’s sports by allowing transgender athletes and danger to women in sex-segregated places like bathrooms and prisons. That doesn’t even get into resolving the issue on drawing the line between civil rights for LGBTQ people and religious freedom, which continues to be litigated in the courts as the U.S. Supreme Court is expected any day now to issue a ruling in Fulton v. City of Philadelphia to determine if foster care agencies can reject same-sex couples over religious objections.

For transgender Americans, who continue to report discrimination and violence at high rates, the absence of the Equality Act may be most keenly felt.

Mara Keisling, outgoing executive director of the National Center for Transgender Equality, disputed any notion the Equality Act is dead and insisted the legislation is “very much alive.”

“We remain optimistic despite misinformation from the opposition,” Keisling said. “NCTE and our movement partners are still working fruitfully on the Equality Act with senators. In fact, we are gaining momentum with all the field organizing we’re doing, like phone banking constituents to call their senators. Legislating takes time. Nothing ever gets through Congress quickly. We expect to see a vote during this Congress, and we are hopeful we can win.”

But one Democratic source said calls to members of Congress against the Equality Act, apparently coordinated by groups like the Heritage Foundation, have has outnumbered calls in favor of it by a substantial margin, with a particular emphasis on Manchin.

No stories are present in the media about same-sex couples being kicked out of a restaurant for holding hands or transgender people for using the restroom consistent with their gender identity, which would be perfectly legal in 25 states thanks to the patchwork of civil rights laws throughout the United States and inadequate protections under federal law.

Tyler Deaton, senior adviser for the American Unity Fund, which has bolstered the Republican-led Fairness for All Act as an alternative to the Equality Act, said he continues to believe the votes are present for a compromise form of the bill.

“I know for a fact there is a supermajority level of support in the Senate for a version of the Equality Act that is fully protective of both LGBTQ civil rights and religious freedom,” Deaton said. “There is interest on both sides of the aisle in getting something done this Congress.”

Deaton, however, didn’t respond to a follow-up inquiry on what evidence exists of agreeing on this compromise.

Biden has already missed the goal he campaigned on in the 2020 election to sign the Equality Act into law within his first 100 days in office. Although Biden renewed his call to pass the legislation in his speech to Congress last month, as things stand now that appears to be a goal he won’t realize for the remainder of this Congress.

Nor has the Biden administration made the Equality Act an issue for top officials within the administration as it pushes for an infrastructure package as a top priority. One Democratic insider said Louisa Terrell, legislative affairs director for the White House, delegated work on the Equality Act to a deputy as opposed to handling it herself.

To be sure, Biden has demonstrated support for the LGBTQ community through executive action at an unprecedented rate, signing an executive order on day one ordering federal agencies to implement the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision last year in Bostock v. Clayton County to the fullest extent possible and dismantling former President Trump’s transgender military ban. Biden also made historic LGBTQ appointments with the confirmation of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and Rachel Levine as assistant secretary of health.

A White House spokesperson insisted Biden’s team across the board remains committed to the Equality Act, pointing to his remarks to Congress.

“President Biden has urged Congress to get the Equality Act to his desk so he can sign it into law and provide long overdue civil rights protections to LGBTQ+ Americans, and he remains committed to seeing this legislation passed as quickly as possible,” the spokesperson said. “The White House and its entire legislative team remains in ongoing and close coordination with organizations, leaders, members of Congress, including the Equality Caucus, and staff to ensure we are working across the aisle to push the Equality Act forward.”

But at least in the near-term, that progress will fall short of fulfilling the promise of updating federal civil rights law with the Equality Act, which will mean LGBTQ people won’t be able to rely on those protections when faced with discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

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D.C. bill to ban LGBTQ panic defense delayed by Capitol security

Delivery of bill to Congress was held up due to protocols related to Jan. 6 riots

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New fencing around the Capitol following the Jan. 6 insurrection prevented some D.C. bills from being delivered to the Hill for a required congressional review. (Blade file photo by Michael K. Lavers)

A bill approved unanimously last December by the D.C. Council to ban the so-called LGBTQ panic defense has been delayed from taking effect as a city law because the fence installed around the U.S. Capitol following the Jan. 6 insurrection prevented the law from being delivered to Congress.

According to Eric Salmi, communications director for D.C. Council member Charles Allen (D-Ward 6), who guided the bill through the Council’s legislative process, all bills approved by the Council and signed by the D.C. mayor must be hand-delivered to Congress for a required congressional review.

“What happened was when the Capitol fence went up after the January insurrection, it created an issue where we physically could not deliver laws to Congress per the congressional review period,” Salmi told the Washington Blade.

Among the bills that could not immediately be delivered to Congress was the Bella Evangelista and Tony Hunter Panic Defense Prohibition and Hate Crimes Response Amendment Act of 2020, which was approved by the Council on a second and final vote on Dec. 15.

Between the time the bill was signed by Mayor Muriel Bowser and published in the D.C. Register under procedural requirements for all bills, it was not ready to be transmitted to Congress until Feb. 16, the Council’s legislative record for the bill shows.

Salmi said the impasse in delivering the bill to Congress due to the security fence prevented the bill from reaching Congress on that date and prevented the mandatory 60-day congressional review period for this bill from beginning at that time. He noted that most bills require a 30 legislative day review by Congress.

But the Evangelista-Hunter bill, named after a transgender woman and a gay man who died in violent attacks by perpetrators who attempted to use the trans and gay panic defense, includes a law enforcement related provision that under the city’s Home Rule Charter passed by Congress in the early 1970s requires a 60-day congressional review.

“There is a chance it goes into effect any day now, just given the timeline is close to being up,” Salmi said on Tuesday. “I don’t know the exact date it was delivered, but I do know the countdown is on,” said Salmi, who added, “I would expect any day now it should go into effect and there’s nothing stopping it other than an insurrection in January.”

If the delivery to Congress had not been delayed, the D.C. Council’s legislative office estimated the congressional review would have been completed by May 12.

A congressional source who spoke on condition of being identified only as a senior Democratic aide, said the holdup of D.C. bills because of the Capitol fence has been corrected.

“The House found an immediate workaround, when this issue first arose after the Jan. 6 insurrection,” the aide said.

“This is yet another reason why D.C. Council bills should not be subject to a congressional review period and why we need to grant D.C. statehood,” the aide said.

The aide added that while no disapproval resolution had been introduced in Congress to overturn the D.C. Evangelista-Hunter bill, House Democrats would have defeated such a resolution.

“House Democrats support D.C. home rule, statehood, and LGBTQ rights,” said the aide.

LGBTQ rights advocates have argued that a ban on using a gay or transgender panic defense in criminal trials is needed to prevent defense attorneys from inappropriately asking juries to find that a victim’s sexual orientation or gender identity or expression is to blame for a defendant’s criminal act, including murder.

Some attorneys have argued that their clients “panicked” after discovering the person against whom they committed a violent crime was gay or transgender, prompting them to act in a way they believed to be a form of self-defense.

In addition to its provision banning the LGBTQ panic defense, the Evangelista-Hunter bill includes a separate provision that strengthens the city’s existing hate crimes law by clarifying that hatred need not be the sole motivating factor for an underlying crime such as assault, murder, or threats to be prosecuted as a hate crime.

LGBTQ supportive prosecutors have said the clarification was needed because it is often difficult to prove to a jury that hatred is the only motive behind a violent crime. The prosecutors noted that juries have found defendants not guilty of committing a hate crime on grounds that they believed other motives were involved in a particular crime after defense lawyers argued that the law required “hate” to be the only motive in order to find someone guilty of a hate crime.

Salmi noted that while the hate crime clarification and panic defense prohibition provisions of the Evangelista-Hunter bill will become law as soon as the congressional review is completed, yet another provision in the bill will not become law after the congressional review because there are insufficient funds in the D.C. budget to cover the costs of implementing the provision.

The provision gives the D.C. Office of Human Rights and the Office of the D.C. Attorney General authority to investigate hate related discrimination at places of public accommodation. Salmi said the provision expands protections against discrimination to include web-based retailers or online delivery services that are not physically located in D.C.

“That is subject to appropriations,” Salmi said. “And until it is funded in the upcoming budget it cannot be legally enforced.”

He said that at Council member Allen’s request, the Council added language to the bill that ensures that all other provisions of the legislation that do not require additional funding – including the ban on use of the LGBTQ panic defense and the provision clarifying that hatred doesn’t have to be the sole motive for a hate crime – will take effect as soon as the congressional approval process is completed.

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D.C. man charged with 2020 anti-gay death threat rearrested

Defendant implicated in three anti-LGBTQ incidents since 2011

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shooting, DC Eagle, assault, hate crime, anti-gay attack, police discrimination, sex police, Sisson, gay news, Washington Blade

A D.C. man arrested in August 2020 for allegedly threatening to kill a gay man outside the victim’s apartment in the city’s Adams Morgan neighborhood and who was released while awaiting trial was arrested again two weeks ago for allegedly threatening to kill another man in an unrelated incident.

D.C. Superior Court records show that Jalal Malki, who was 37 at the time of his 2020 arrest on a charge of bias-related attempts to do bodily harm against the gay man, was charged on May 4, 2021 with unlawful entry, simple assault, threats to kidnap and injure a person, and attempted possession of a prohibited weapon against the owner of a vacant house at 4412 Georgia Ave., N.W.

Court charging documents state that Malki was allegedly staying at the house without permission as a squatter. An arrest affidavit filed in court by D.C. police says Malki allegedly threatened to kill the man who owns the house shortly after the man arrived at the house while Malki was inside.

According to the affidavit, Malki walked up to the owner of the house while the owner was sitting in his car after having called police and told him, “If you come back here, I’m going to kill you.” While making that threat Malki displayed what appeared to be a gun in his waistband, but which was later found to be a toy gun, the affidavit says.

Malki then walked back inside the house minutes before police arrived and arrested him. Court records show that similar to the court proceedings following his 2020 arrest for threatening the gay man, a judge in the latest case ordered Malki released while awaiting trial. In both cases, the judge ordered him to stay away from the two men he allegedly threatened to kill.

An arrest affidavit filed by D.C. police in the 2020 case states that Malki allegedly made the threats inside an apartment building where the victim lived on the 2300 block of Champlain Street, N.W. It says Malki was living in a nearby building but often visited the building where the victim lived.

“Victim 1 continued to state during an interview that it was not the first time that Defendant 1 had made threats to him, but this time Defendant 1 stated that if he caught him outside, he would ‘fucking kill him.’” the affidavit says. It quotes the victim as saying during this time Malki repeatedly called the victim a “fucking faggot.”

The affidavit, prepared by the arresting officers, says that after the officers arrested Malki and were leading him to a police transport vehicle to be booked for the arrest, he expressed an “excited utterance” that he was “in disbelief that officers sided with the ‘fucking faggot.’”

Court records show that Malki is scheduled to appear in court on June 4 for a status hearing for both the 2020 arrest and the arrest two weeks ago for allegedly threatening to kill the owner of the house in which police say he was illegally squatting.

Superior Court records show that Malki had been arrested three times between 2011 and 2015 in cases unrelated to the 2021 and 2020 cases for allegedly also making threats of violence against people. Two of the cases appear to be LGBTQ related, but prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office did not list the cases as hate crimes.

In the first of the three cases, filed in July 2011, Malki allegedly shoved a man inside Dupont Circle and threatened to kill him after asking the man why he was wearing a purple shirt.

“Victim 1 believes the assault occurred because Suspect 1 believes Victim 1 is a homosexual,” the police arrest affidavit says.

Court records show prosecutors charged Malki with simple assault and threats to do bodily harm in the case. But the court records show that on Sept. 13, 2011, D.C. Superior Court Judge Stephen F. Eilperin found Malki not guilty on both charges following a non-jury trial.

The online court records do not state why the judge rendered a not guilty verdict. With the courthouse currently closed to the public and the press due to COVID-related restrictions, the Washington Blade couldn’t immediately obtain the records to determine the judge’s reason for the verdict.

In the second case, court records show Malki was arrested by D.C. police outside the Townhouse Tavern bar and restaurant at 1637 R St., N.W. on Nov. 7, 2012 for allegedly threatening one or more people with a knife after employees ordered Malki to leave the establishment for “disorderly behavior.”

At the time, the Townhouse Tavern was located next door to the gay nightclub Cobalt, which before going out of business two years ago, was located at the corner of 17th and R Streets, N.W.

The police arrest affidavit in the case says Malki allegedly pointed a knife in a threatening way at two of the tavern’s employees who blocked his path when he attempted to re-enter the tavern. The affidavit says he was initially charged by D.C. police with assault with a dangerous weapon – knife. Court records, however, show that prosecutors with the U.S. Attorney’s Office lowered the charges to two counts of simple assault. The records show that on Jan. 15, 2013, Malki pleaded guilty to the two charges as part of a plea bargain arrangement.

The records show that Judge Marissa Demeo on that same day issued a sentence of 30 days for each of the two charges but suspended all 30 days for both counts. She then sentenced Malki to one year of supervised probation for both charges and ordered that he undergo alcohol and drug testing and undergo treatment if appropriate.

In the third case prior to the 2020 and 2021 cases, court records show Malki was arrested outside the Cobalt gay nightclub on March 14, 2015 on multiple counts of simple assault, attempted assault with a dangerous weapon – knife, possession of a prohibited weapon – knife, and unlawful entry.

The arrest affidavit says an altercation started on the sidewalk outside the bar when for unknown reasons, Malki grabbed a female customer who was outside smoking and attempted to pull her toward him. When her female friend came to her aid, Malki allegedly got “aggressive” by threatening the woman and “removed what appeared to be a knife from an unknown location” and pointed it at the woman’s friend in a threatening way, the affidavit says.

It says a Cobalt employee minutes later ordered Malki to leave the area and he appeared to do so. But others noticed that he walked toward another entrance door to Cobalt and attempted to enter the establishment knowing he had been ordered not to return because of previous problems with his behavior, the affidavit says. When he attempted to push away another employee to force his way into Cobalt, Malki fell to the ground during a scuffle and other employees held him on the ground while someone else called D.C. police.

Court records show that similar to all of Malki’s arrests, a judge released him while awaiting trial and ordered him to stay away from Cobalt and all of those he was charged with threatening and assaulting.

The records show that on Sept. 18, 2015, Malki agreed to a plea bargain offer by prosecutors in which all except two of the charges – attempted possession of a prohibited weapon and simple assault – were dropped. Judge Alfred S. Irving Jr. on Oct. 2, 2015 sentenced Malki to 60 days of incarnation for each of the two charges but suspended all but five days, which he allowed Malki to serve on weekends, the court records show.

The judge ordered that the two five-day jail terms could be served concurrently, meaning just five days total would be served, according to court records. The records also show that Judge Irving sentenced Malki to one year of supervised probation for each of the two counts and ordered that he enter an alcohol treatment program and stay away from Cobalt.

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