poetics, time, body disruption and marginally queer solutions

Monday, September 04, 2006

Texas police officer convicted of sexually assaulting transsexual

A San Antonio police officer was convicted Wednesday of violating the civil rights of a transsexual who said the officer raped and beat her during a traffic stop. The jury found that Officer Dean Gutierrez's conduct violated Gabriel Bernal's rights through aggravated sexual assault. A sentencing hearing is set for December 1. The felony carries a sentence of up to life in
prison and as much as $250,000 in fines, the U.S. Justice Department said.

Although the names of sexual assault victims are usually withheld, Bernal has consented to have her name made public. Bernal goes by the name of Starlight and prefers to be addressed as a woman, the San Antonio Express-News reported.

In the trial, prosecutors presented DNA evidence and the testimony of Bernal, 23. Prosecutors said Gutierrez, 46, stopped Bernal on June 10, 2005, ordered her into his car, and drove her to a remote location where he physically and sexually assaulted her.


Ivorian gay community fights for right to life and love

Abidjan - The tiny bar in Abidjan's Marcory neighbourhood is just one among thousands in Ivory Coast's commercial capital. And, at first, there seems little to set it apart from the others.

The music blares on the tiny dance floor as customers try out the latest moves in front of the wall-length mirrors so important for the perfection of the city's daily-changing dance crazes.

But for one young man, who prefers to be known only as Yann, this place serves as a kind of lifeline.


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