Detroit Settles Lawsuit Over Police Sting on Gays
May 16, 2002
615 W. Lafayette, Detroit, MI 48226
By Darren A. Nichols, The Detroit News
DETROIT—The Detroit City Council approved the
authorization of a $170,000 settlement over an alleged sting of gay men
soliciting sex at Rouge Park.
On behalf of the Triangle Foundation, a gay civil rights group, and six
individuals, the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan filed a lawsuit in
December in U.S. District Court in Detroit against the Detroit Police
Wednesday’s approval by the council means both sides will appear before
Judge Arthur Tarnow to reach a final settlement agreement.
Among the other issues the sides will hash out are changes to two city
ordinances. The Triangle Foundation wants to change the annoying person
ordinance and would like the city’s solicitation ordinance to be more
"We wanted to do something to really effect change in these actual
laws so they were not available as tools to be abused," said Jeffrey
Montgomery, executive director of the Triangle Foundation. "The wording
in the solicitation ordinance is not very specific, and it’s that lack of
specificity that allowed the latitude and abuse of the police to use
"We’re very positive, and these are great forward steps in this
process. (But) it’s ultimately going to be up to the courts."
The lawsuit was filed after the Triangle Foundation had petitioned city
officials and the council about gay men being profiled at the park. The
Triangle Foundation also accused the Detroit Police Department of entrapping
gay men looking for sex.
Detroit police spokesman Officer Robert Carlton said he was unaware of the
settlement and unable to comment on it.
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