Lesbian Sues Sheriff Over Forced "Ex-Gay" Therapy
BY Advocate.com Editors
May 27 2011 8:55 AM ET
In a lawsuit filed in federal court in Georgia, Amanda Booker claims that a sheriff’s department forced her to see “ex-gay” therapists paid by the county rather than take her to mandated psychiatric treatment.
The Georgia Voice reports on the lawsuit, filed in the U.S. district court for the northern district of Georgia against the Bartow County sheriff’s department and others charging violation of constitutional rights.
“Booker alleges in the suit that after her family called the Bartow County Sheriff’s Department in April 2010 to have her committed to a psychiatric hospital due to her drug addiction, the deputies ignored a judge’s order to take her to Northwest Georgia Regional Hospital in Rome, Ga.,” reports the Voice.
Instead, the lawsuit alleges that Booker was taken to a different hospital after she began having seizures. Lt. Mark Mayton of the Bartow sheriff’s department began to harass Booker about her lesbian relationship while she was in the hospital, the suit charges, and upon her release from the hospital, Mayton transported her to his friend’s home in his personal vehicle, where Booker remained for up to one week.
Later, according to the lawsuit as reported by the Voice, Mayton took Booker to the private residence of self-described “evangelists” Chris and Donna McDowell. The couple received $600 in county money to attempt to “convert” Booker from being a lesbian.
The suit seeks an undetermined amount of jury award for the damages Booker claims she suffered from the false arrest and harassment.