the don't tell show

Lesbian Veteran Jene Newsome Will Sue Rapid City Police For Getting Her Kicked Out of Air Force

Jene Newsome — the nine-year Air Force vet honorably discharged in January under DADT after police in South Dakota, looking to serve a felony theft arrest warrant on her wife Cheryl Hutson, reported seeing their same-sex Iowa marriage license to Newsome’s superiors — was unable to reach a settlement deal with Rapid City. So she’s suing.

As we noted back in March, Newsome teamed up with the ACLU of South Dakota and asked for $800,000 in damages from Rapid City Mayor Alan Hanks and the Rapid City City Council, given the police department “retaliated” against the former servicewoman when she refused to help the cops track down Hutson, who cops wanted to question about a theft in Alaska, where the pair now live in Fairbanks. (The cops claims, in the course of their November 2009 investigation, they notified Newsome’s employers because that’s standard practice. Except Newsome wasn’t part of their investigation. Police Chief Steve Allender said in March no department policy was violated.)

With Rapid City refusing to pay up, Newsome last month notified the city she is going to sue them under state law for monetary damages and lost income.

And so here we stand: A perfectly capable woman kicked out of the military because state cops stabbed her in the back. I’m sure her attorneys have already looked into the possibility of taking her claim to federal court — and suing the U.S. government, claiming not only that DADT is unconstitutional, but that the military violated the specifics of the law. Namely, Newsome did not tell brass about her sexuality; a vindictive third party did.

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9 Comments

  • maxpower

    I hope she gets paid. Maybe it will set an example that ratting out gays and lesbians to their military higher-ups will cost you.

  • southpaugh

    Black, female, gay: Police probably thought they’d hit a trifecta. I’d have loved to have heard the plotting leading up to the law enforcement agencies hyjinx. I’d especially would have liked to see their faces when she stood up for herself and came back at them. You go, Missus! Bleed ’em! Make them pay. Make ’em never do it again. Hahahaha! The bastards!

  • s_b

    It’s their standard practice to out any homos they come across in the course of their investigation? Is that what you’re saying?

  • tjr101

    I hope she gets tons of money and lives happily ever after with her wife!

  • DR

    @s_b:

    She was reported to the Air Force for the crime of Hindering/Obstruction. To say that she wasn’t part of the investigation when she was the only person with any solid knowledge of where her (wanted felon)wife was is a bit of a stretch…

    I’m fairly certain that type of behavior is unbecoming someone in the air force even if the reason she was reported was spiteful; her refusal to co-operate certainly doesn’t look good on anyone, worse to me if you’re a soldier.

    Maybe she gets a policy revision, but to get cash for lying to the cops? I don’t think so.

  • raynebeau

    @COMMENT NO.5…. lying to the cops? lets not forget that newsome was at work when the cops came to her home. lets not forget that her job consisted of loading bomber aircraft. lets not forget she and her fellow airman had a mission to accomplish. the rapid city police department interrupted her day, to question the whereabouts of her wife. how is one supposed to automatically know where ones spouse is, when they are at work??? newsome gave the cops all the info she could, her not pacifying the police in helping them do their job, does not mean that she should have been outed. newsome was NOT charged with anything by the local police, remember that! maybe you should follow the story more closely prior to making assumptions.

  • suzygoo

    Girls: One of the benefits of marriage is that a spouse may be be legally required to testify against the other spouse. If this were a hetro marriage, the husband could have just said, I don’t know where she is and that would have been the end of that. But these are lesbo’s and you all know that, for some god-fearing christian folk, that is not a marriage in south dakota even though it is legit in Iowa.

  • suzygoo

    Girls: One of the benefits of marriage is that a spouse may NOT be be legally required to testify against the other spouse. If this were a hetro marriage, the husband could have just said, I don’t know where she is and that would have been the end of that. But these are lesbo’s and you all know that, for some god-fearing christian folk, that is not a marriage in south dakota even though it is legit in Iowa.

  • win

    suzygoo, being married does not allow you to obstruct justice, lie to the cops are such. The spousal priviledge applies to testifying against a spouse, that is not pertinent in this case.

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