St. Louis police sergeant allegedly told to “tone down his gayness”

It’s a story that’s hard to believe and yet not at all hard to believe: A police sergeant claims that he was once chosen to be the police liaison to St. Louis’s gay community, but later told to “tone down” his “gayness” if he ever hoped to get a promotion.

This claim is made in a lawsuit filed January 10th by Sgt. Keith Wildhaber, a 22-year St. Louis County police veteran.

Despite a string of glowing performance reviews, Wildhaber reportedly watched the majority of his peers get promoted while he remained a sergeant.

Related: Police Lieutenant Temporarily Disarmed After Publishing Nasty Antigay Letter

“Defendant believes plaintiff’s behavior, mannerisms, and/or appearance do not fit the stereotypical norms of what a ‘male’ should be,” according to the lawsuit.

The lawsuit alleges Wildhaber visited John Saracino, the owner of Bartolino’s restaurant, in 2014.

At the time, Saracino also happened to be a member of the department’s civilian police board.

Related: Gay Officer Suing NYPD Claims Discrimination Led To Poor Evaluation

“The command staff has a problem with your sexuality,” he reportedly told Wildhaber.

“If you ever want to see a white shirt (get a promotion), you should tone down your gayness.”

Reached Wednesday, Saracino denied the claim when reached by St. Louis Today.

“I never had a conversation like that,” he told the paper. “I would never say anything like that. That’s not me.”

Related: Why Is One Cop So Obsessed With Luring Gay Men Into Public Restrooms To Arrest Them?

Wildhaber has been asked by the St. Louis County Police Association to serve on a committee to “ensure all of our members are treated equally and fairly in the workplace,” said Joe Patterson, president and county police detective.

We have been actively recruiting LGBT members and minority members to serve on steering committees in order to bring forth not only their concerns, but their ideas on how to improve the police association.

He said the association is eager to work with the police department and community.

“In the course of our duties, we encounter people from all walks of life and all backgrounds, and our police department should be reflective of the population we serve,” he said. “I don’t think you can be overly inclusive in 2017.”

Wildhaber has been with the department since ’94, and served four years in the Army.

In 1998, he won a medal of valor from his department when he rescued someone from a burning car.

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    It’s perfectly possible (and sometimes expedient) to tone down some elements of “gayness”; whereas some other elements, not at all (for some individuals). I think an illuminating distinction is that while “gayness” can be toned down, homosexuality, irrefutably, cannot.

  • DCguy

    Here’s a thought, if he needs to tone down his gayness. how about the other officers tone down their straightness?

    If they can’t do that, then oh well guess they can go F-themselves.

    Oh and I can’t wait for the usual crew of self hating Log Cabin trolls to come in here and find a reason why the department is the victim of the crazed “homosexual” lobby and that this cop is somehow the bully.

  • Heywood Jablowme

    Remember that slogan Miracle Whip had for a little awhile, until too many people made fun of it?

    “We are Miracle Whip… and we will NOT tone it down!”

    Sgt. Miracle Whip won’t tone it down? – lol. There’s no video, but from the photo it looks like he probably wouldn’t be much of a “flamer.” Well, maybe for St. Louis. This all sounds very St. Louis!

  • Kieran

    Well how gay is he? I’d have to see a video.

  • radiooutmike

    If you’re asked to tone down your “gayness” and you’re not given any examples of said over-the-topness…you are not the problem. They are.

    What? Did he come down with a feather boa, a cigarette in long black holder and singing Carol Channing?

    Good grief…an Army vet, a hero, 22 years in with glowing reviews and can’t get a promotion…?! What would he have to do? Bang a female hooker in holding?

    • silveroracle

      Totally agree.
      Just so wrong.

    • John

      No examples of his gayness? From the way Queerty reports PD may have given examples but do you think Queerty would give that aspect? nope.
      IF he pulled me over and said “Gurrrl, you know how fast you were going?” That would need to be toned down…doesn’t come across as professional but Queerty doesn’t tell us leaving us all in the dark to how gay his actions are/were.

  • Sluggo2007

    It’s Missouri, for God’s sake!!! What do you expect?

  • Mr-DJ

    Sluggo2007 – You are spot on. Now if I were to honestly answer that, I would ‘expect’ them to come out of their caves and join the rest of modern civilized society.

    The REAL problem this country has with cops is that too many of them join for the wrong reasons, and we end up the ones that need to tone down their “macho-ness”, and inflated egos, and their lack of understanding that they are NOT the judge, jury, OR executioner.

    • Sluggo2007

      So many guys join the force because they are very insecure and need to feel power by acting like bullies. That’s what gets them off. It’s complete fantasy.

  • ErikO

    I guess he’s a queen or one of those “men” that when they open their mouths a purse flies out.

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