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Three Axed Over Texas Gay Club Raid


The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission has fired two agents who took part in a June 28 raid on a gay bar in Fort Worth, along with their supervisor, the Associated Press reports.

On Friday the commission fired agent Christopher Aller, agent trainee Jason Chapman, and their supervisor, Sgt. Terry Parsons, who was not present at the raid on the Rainbow Lounge. One bar patron was seriously hurt in the raid.

Liquor board officials said their investigation of the incident showed that Aller and Chapman failed to report that they used force in arresting the patron or that he incurred serious injuries, according to the AP. Parsons failed to report that his agents used force. The board report also said the two agents disrupted the business during the raid and participated in the action without their supervisor's approval.

The commission also disciplined Parsons's direct supervisor, Lt. Gene Anderson, by giving him a three-day unpaid suspension and six months' probation, and issued a written reprimand to Capt. Robert Cloud, who oversees commission operations in Dallas and Fort Worth.

The liquor commission is changing its policies on the use of force, implementing diversity training, shortening agents' shifts, and reviewing its agent field training program. Some of these changes were planned before the raid, but they may prevent a similar incident from happening, board spokeswoman Carolyn Beck told the AP.

The raid, in which Fort Worth police participated along with liquor commission agents, was initially described by the authorities as a routine liquor license check, but it resulted in the arrest of six patrons and serious head injuries to one of them, Chad Gibson, who was hospitalized for a week.

Fairness Fort Worth, a group formed to protest the raid, praised the disciplinary actions and policy changes as appropriate. The AP could not reach the fired and disciplined officers for comment. They have 10 days to appeal the actions.

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