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LGBT relief funds launched to help Texas hurricane victims

Houston residents lose homes, possessions in catastrophic floods

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Floodwaters flood Resurrection Metropolitan Community Church in Houston on Aug. 27, 2017. What was once Hurricane Harvey has inundated large swaths of the city and southeast Texas since it made landfall on the state’s Gulf Coast. (Photo courtesy of Resurrection Metropolitan Community Church)

Houston’s LGBT community center on Monday launched a special relief fund to help LGBT people who are among the thousands of people in Houston and surrounding jurisdictions who have lost their homes over the past few days to catastrophic flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey.
 
“The catastrophic and historic impact of Hurricane Harvey will be felt by the LGBTQ community of Houston, Texas, for days, months, and potentially years to come,” the Montrose Center said in a statement.
 
“Help our LGBTQ community members displaced by the storm today by giving to the LGBTQ Disaster Relief Fund, managed by the Montrose Center — Houston’s LGBTQ counseling and community center serving Houston for 39 years,” the statement stays.
 
According to the statement released on Aug. 28, money raised through the relief fund would be used to help individuals and families “begin to rebuild their lives through counseling, case management, direct assistance with shelf stable food, furniture, housing and more.”
 
In a related development, the Transgender Foundation of America, a Houston-based transgender services and advocacy organization founded in 1998, announced it had organized a separate disaster relief fund to “assist Gulf Coast trans, intersex, and genderqueer survivors recover” from Harvey and its related flooding.
 
“The Transgender Foundation of America created this disaster relief fund because trans, intersex, and genderqueer individuals have historically experienced significant difficulties in natural disaster situations,” a statement released by the group says. “This fund will be used to help our historically underserved community recover from this catastrophic event,” it says.
 
The creation of the two disaster relief funds came at a time when officials in Houston and many other areas of southeast Texas reported that a never-before-seen volume of rainfall rather than the usual high winds associated with a hurricane caused massive damage from flooding in high population centers, especially those in Houston.
 
The nation’s fourth largest city, Houston has been accustomed to flooding of its numerous waterways, including bayous, but officials said the “historic” flooding over the past several days resulted in serious damage and total destruction of thousands of homes and businesses unlike any previous flooding incidents.
 
“Houston is really bad off right now,” said Houston LGBT rights advocate Lou Weaver, who said he was stranded this week in Dallas after learning, during a visit there, that all main roads leading to Houston were impassible.
 
“Many of my friends have lost everything they own,” he told the Washington Blade. “Some are stranded in their homes.”
 
He said that in addition to the creation of the LGBT disaster funds many from Houston’s LGBT community were volunteering their help at the George R. Brown Convention Center, the city’s largest convention hall that has been converted into an emergency shelter.
 
A Houston city spokesperson told the Washington Post more than 1,500 people had been taken to the convention center Sunday night. Many of them had been rescued by boat from the roofs of their homes as flood waters rose to the height of their first floor ceilings, disaster relief officials said.
 
Officials said the convention center has the capacity to take in a total of 4,000 people displaced from their homes by the flooding.
 
One of the buildings hit hard by the flooding was Resurrection Metropolitan Community Church, a mostly LGBT congregation located in Houston’s Inner Loop near White Oak Bayou. The bayou surged over its banks during the heavy rainfall on Saturday night, putting one to one-and-a-half feet of water into the church.
 
Rev. Troy Treash, the church’s senior pastor, said church members were ripping up carpeting and shoveling out mud from the church as he spoke to the Blade on Monday.
 
“We’re just part of a city where everything is crazy at the moment,” he said. “We’re a bit awash in feelings at the moment.”  
 
Treash said the congregation moved into its current space in 2000, a year before Tropical Storm Allison flooded Houston in 2001.
 
“This is the second flood in this space. We thought it wouldn’t happen again,” he said. “We definitely need prayers.”
 
The congregation is looking for ways to help families forced out of their homes by the flooding, he told the Blade.
 
“We’re looking for ways to put them up,” he said. “We’re trying to find spaces that are safe for them. We’re a progressive LGBT congregation that has a voice in a part of the world that is sorely missing it right now.”
 
Veteran gay rights advocate Ray Hill, a longtime resident of Houston’s Montrose neighborhood long known for its high concentration of LGBT people, said he is lucky that his street and the street on which the Montrose Center is located four blocks away are on higher ground and had not been hit by flooding as of Monday afternoon.
 
Hill noted that the section of Montrose where he lives and where the Montrose Center and a number of popular gay bars and clubs are located are on the opposite side of Montrose’s southern boundary, which consists of the Buffalo Bayou, a body of water that often floods during storms far less severe than Harvey.
 
He said that section of Montrose was hit by flooding over the past few days, forcing many residents to seek refuge elsewhere.
 
The Montrose Center initially had planned to serve as a place where people displaced by the storm could to come for support — both LGBT and straight, Hill told the Blade. But he said the severe flooding in other parts of the city prevented most of the center’s staff from getting to the center to organize the relief effort.
 
Instead, according to Hill, the few staff people able to make to the center set up a makeshift information and referral center in the center’s first floor garage providing cover from the rain, which was continuing on Monday.
 
“They are giving directions to other emergency sites,” Hill said. “So our community is being responsive. If you live in a place like Houston part of being a good citizen is sharing and caring.”
 
Trans rights advocate Monica Roberts, a longtime Houston resident, said she too is fortunate to live in a section near downtown Houston that was not hit by flooding and retained its electric power service.
 
But she said he was worried about additional flooding expected when the city releases a large quantity of water from a reservoir behind a dam that has filled to capacity from the massive rainfall caused by Harvey. City officials have said not releasing the water, which will cause additional but modest flooding, could result in the dam bursting, a catastrophe of unthinkable proportions.
 
Roberts said she is aware of concern within the trans community of possible discrimination against trans people at city and private shelters for those forced from their homes due to flooding.
 
“As of now I have not heard of any cases where LGBT people were turned away from a shelter,” she said.
 
Roberts and other LGBT activists say a separate matter raising concern is what they see as the politicization of the flooding by some Texas Republican Party leaders. Among other things, some of the GOP activists were attacking Houston’s LGBT-supportive mayor, Sylvester Turner, for deciding not to order most residents to evacuate the city in the days before the hurricane hit.
 
Roberts and others supportive of the mayor point to the attempt to evacuate the city in 2005 as Hurricane Rita approached, when 100 or more people died after being stranded in traffic backed up for miles as 2.5 million people fled the city at the same time.
 
“It was 95-plus degree temperatures,” Roberts said. “People ran out of gas. Some suffered from heat stroke and emergency responders couldn’t get to them,” she said. Roberts noted that had an evacuation attempt been made this time the fleeing motorists would have been trapped in flood waters that currently have submerged nearly all highways and roads leading out of Houston.
 
Among those initially calling for an evacuation was Republican Gov. Greg Abbott.
 
“Even if an evacuation order hasn’t been issued by your local official, if you’re in an area between Corpus Christi and Houston, you need to strongly consider evacuating,” Abbott said at a news conference last Friday.
 
Turner succeeded two-term Democratic Mayor Annise Parker, a prominent lesbian activist and longtime LGBT rights advocate before becoming mayor. A term limits law prevented Parker from running for a third term. Roberts and Hill said Turner is a strong supporter of the LGBT community.
 
Gay activist Ryan Wilson said he and his husband moved to Houston in March after his husband took a new job there. He said the severe flooding caused by Harvey wasn’t something he and his husband expected.
 
“We’re kind of like living on an island right now surrounded by water,” he said, noting that his neighborhood in the city’s midtown section had so far been spared from flooding. “The further out from the city center you go, the worse it gets.”
 
Information about the Hurricane Harvey LGBTQ Disaster Relief Fund, the Transgender Disaster Relief Fund and the Resurrection Metropolitan Community Church can be accessed here:

https://my.reason2race.com/DNicol/HurricaneHarveyLGBTQDisasterReliefFund2017/Donate
 
https://www.paypal.com/donate/?token=IWjUPnJCamFYl0MVvOQYIW0a6JktodXLNkt4hAvP-fk0XYns7w8wIP82iuNXxAoeZlIUMm&country.x=US&locale.x=US
 
http://transadvocate.com/help-the-trans-community-overcome-hurricanetropical-storm-harvey_n_20619.htm

http://www.resurrectionmcc.org

Michael K. Lavers contributed to this story.

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6 Comments

6 Comments

  1. Robert

    August 29, 2017 at 9:53 am

    My heart breaks for all the victims of flooding !! I know from going through it and walking away with just the clothing on my back , I just sent money to the SPCA in Houston as pets for us gays are our children I wish i lived closer to open our home to the gay community we own a nice home and have been together for 20 years married legally for 14 years strictly monogamous. I will continue to seek other ways that we can assist GOD BLESS you all

  2. juliadennehy .

    August 29, 2017 at 10:47 am

    Living in Massachusetts, we watch the Texas legislature attempt to pass all kids of hateful legislation against the LGBT community. I have heard persons here in Mass say they would not lift a finger to assist Texans, other than our own within the LGBT community. You got what you deserved. No sympathy here.

    • Robert

      August 29, 2017 at 12:06 pm

      WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT ??????? have you lost your mind

      • lnm3921

        August 29, 2017 at 8:00 pm

        Do you pay attention to anything that goes on with Texas in regards to GLBT people? It’s one of the most homophobic states in terms of its attitudes and proposed legislation. Historically, it pushes a very anti-GLBT agenda to this day! Do you live in a bubble? I once had a business meeting in Dallas and sat in a restaurant where I had to listen to a homophobic woman ranting against gay men to her date who lived and worked in Hollywood. She was obnoxious and I wanted to tell her what a b she was!

        What happened in Texas due to Harvey is a tragedy, I feel for the GLBT community and the animals that are suffering. However, I won’t ignore their record. Further, I’ve been to Dallas myself and experienced how even the Gay community is pretty racist treating non-anglo people with disdain and contempt. I have a friend who is white who lived there for a year and hated it as he said the people were so unfriendly he couldn’t wait to get out!

    • EastCoastJ

      September 1, 2017 at 1:18 pm

      I love MA. but even there we find some evil people. Kids (and pets), wherever they are, are guilty of nothing.

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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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