Atlanta

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Arrests made in attack on gay couple in Piedmont Park

Atlanta Police Department Officer Patricia Powell, the recently appointed LGBT liaison, said she is considering offering a safety course to gay Midtown residents after a gay couple was robbed at gunpoint in Piedmont Park.

“I don’t know if gay people are being targeted,” Powell said Tuesday.

But she noted the July 2 armed robbery of Rev. Joshua Noblitt of Saint Mark United Methodist Church and his partner, as well as reports of anti-gay epithets used during a series of fights and disturbances by young people at the June 3 Screen on the Green in the park.

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Gay men report being robbed at gunpoint in Piedmont Park

Rev. Josh Noblitt of Saint Mark United Methodist Church and his partner say they were robbed at gunpoint Friday in Piedmont Park by a group of young men after being asked if they were gay.

Noblitt said he and his partner, Trent, were having a picnic dinner on the grassy area on 10th Street at about 9:45 p.m. on July 2 when three young men approached them.

“They walked up directly to us and asked, ‘Are y’all gay? Two men laying on a blanket. We ought to beat y’all for that,’” Noblitt said.

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Fulton Chair John Eaves comes out in support of gay marriage

Fulton County Commission Chair John Eaves said today he supports full marriage equality for same-sex couples after initially only supporting civil unions.

“I did previously support civil unions but I have since learned more … and my previous stance was not sufficient,” Eaves said today. “I’m supportive of marriage equality, not just civil unions.”

Eaves said after talking with members of the gay community and studying the issue on his own, he now believes in gay marriage.

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Mary Norwood’s lawsuit against incumbent Fulton Commission chair dismissed

A Fulton County Superior Court judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Mary Norwood against current Fulton County Commission Chair John Eaves after she alleged he was trying to block her from the ballot.

In his short ruling issued July 1, Judge Jerry Baxter stated, “The court finds, at this time, there is no actual controversy … and the ends of justice do not warrant a declaratory judgment.”

Norwood, who is attempting to gather some 23,000 signatures to qualify as an Independent on the ballot to run against Eaves for the Fulton County Commission chair post, filed suit last week after Eaves and his attorneys challenged “several thousand” of the signatures she has obtained.

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Chaz Bono set to attend annual transgender conference in Atlanta

Chaz Bono

Chaz Bono will be attending the 20th annual Southern Comfort Conference this year, according to organizers of the event. SCC is a conference that serves the transgender community with seminars, workshops, as well as vendors and special theme nights and parties. The conference this year is set for Sept. 6-12.

In a letter to members of the SCC Facebook group, Alexis Dee, a member of the event’s board of directors, said she spoke to Bono and he would be coming to the conference to conduct a seminar with his friend, Nick Adams. What the topic is and when the seminar will be held is not yet listed on the SCC website’s schedule. Bono is listed as a presenter on the website.

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Citizens Review Board weighs Atlanta Eagle cases

Citizens Review Board Chair Joy Morrissey

The Atlanta Citizens Review Board will discuss the cases of Atlanta Eagle co-owner Robby Kelley and doorman Ernest Buehl at its July 8 meeting. The two men allege that the Atlanta Police Department, including members of the notorious Red Dog Unit, used abusive language toward them during the Sept. 10 raid on the gay bar.

The CRB took up its first of a total of 14 Atlanta Eagle complaints on June 10 when it upheld manager David Shepherd’s complaint that he was falsely arrested during the raid. The board also recommended Officer B.E. Bridges be issued a written reprimand to go into his personnel file and Officer John Brock be punished with a three-day suspension for their roles in Shepherd’s arrest. Atlanta Interim Police Chief George Turner has 30 days to respond to the CRB recommendations.