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Justice for Women Arrested, Assaulted for Kissing in Hawaii 

Justice for Women Arrested, Assaulted for Kissing in Hawaii 

Hawaii

The Honolulu Police Department reaches a settlement after one of their cops allegedly harassed and assaulted a Los Angeles lesbian couple on holiday.

A Hawaiian vacation turned into a nightmare for L.A. couple Courtney Wilson and Taylor Guerrero after a Honolulu police officer became enraged by their public affection. After being assaulted, arrested, and forced to stay on Oahu, the two women finally got a semblance of justice, with the Honolulu Police Department settling with the women for $80,000.

Wilson and Guerrero were holding hands and exchanged a kiss while visiting a grocery store on Oahu's North Shore in March 2015. A uniformed, off-duty cop, Bobby Harrison, began screaming at the women to "take it somewhere else." Harrison then began following Wilson and Guerrero around the Foodland store, eventually leading Wilson to call 911 to report the officer's aggressive behavior. That's when the officer, 26 years on the force, grabbed Wilson's arm. Guerrero intervened and was shoved to the ground; Wilson was punched by Harrison. Foodland employees helped subdue the women while more officers arrived. Wilson and Guerrero were arrested for assaulting an officer and had to use their vacation money to bail themselves out. Still, the women were ordered to stay on Oahu until their case was heard; they were forced to sleep on the beach for a week after their money ran out.

The Honolulu PD agreed to conduct an internal investigation into Harrison's behavior, but kept him on active duty. In October, the women filed a federal lawsuit accusing Harrison of violating their civil rights. Eventually, the case against Wilson and Guerrero was dismissed and Harrison retired. In exchange for the recently-announced $80,000 settlement, the women dropped their case against the former officer.

Wilson and Guerrero are no longer a couple -- Guerrero decided to stay permanently in Hawaii -- but remain friends.

"For the publicity that it has gained, I hope that people saw it and it gives them inspiration to stand up for the civil rights that we have and to not tolerate bigotry behavior like that because it's not acceptable," Wilson told a Hawaiian NBC affiliate.

Advocate Magazine - KehlaniAdvocate Magazine - Gus Kenworthy

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