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Federal Suit Says Markham Police Gay-Bashed Long Time Resident

CHICAGO, 11/15/07 – Attorneys for a south suburban gay man filed suit in federal court today over an alleged Memorial Day police gay bashing that included breaking into the man's home with shotguns drawn, followed by a prolonged public humiliation mixed with anti-gay epithets in front of his neighbors as he sat handcuffed to a chair at the home's entrance

Without knocking or announcing that they were police officers, several plain-clothed Markham cops burst into the home of 47-year-old Frankie Brown on May 31st, according to the suit. They pointed assault rifles at Brown and forced him lie face down on the floor of his bathroom. They then cuffed him, dragged him into an adjacent room, and slammed him into a chair.

"I'll sleep better tonight knowing there is one less fag on the street," said one officer allegedly. Other reported police comments included "We shouldn't be touching him, he takes it in the ass and sucks dick" and "What does a fag like you need with a lawyer."

Brown says cops searching the residence picked up a photo of him with male relatives, found a gay pornographic video concealed in the home, and then brought both outside of the house along with Brown to show his neighbors and other police participating in the raid. While making comments alleging that Brown had sex with the people in the photo, they shined a police spotlight on him as he sat handcuffed to a chair at the entrance of the residence. The public humiliation in front of his neighbors lasted for more than an hour.

Eventually Mr. Brown's teenage nephew, who lives with him and is his legal ward, arrived at the home. According to the suit, "The Defendant Officers immediately began harassing the young man with extremely offensive and derogatory language insinuating that he was involved in sexual activity with his uncle… The Defendant Officers then informed Mr. Brown's neighbors that Mr. Brown was HIV positive, a fact that Mr. Brown had not previously shared with anyone, and which was only discovered by the Defendant Officers by examining the medications in his medicine cabinet."

After several hours police took Mr. Brown in handcuffs to Markham's police station. The following evening he was released without charges. During the course of the raid and search, police allegedly stole approximately $150 cash that was in the residence.

Mr. Brown is represented by Jon Loevy and Matt Jenkins of the civil rights law firm, Loevy and Loevy. A brief report appeared on Channel 7 and it was the lead story on 365 Gay on Thursday, Nov.15th. The most thorough report appeared on Channel 2. See the following URL:



(From a story written by GLN's Andy Thayer. Dept of full-disclosure: Andy also works at Loevy & Loevy. Mr. Brown will be our featured guest on the December 21st edition of our show on CAN TV, 6:30 - 6:55 PM on Cable Channel 21 in Chicago.)


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