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‘A Hug and Kiss’ lands gay couple in handcuffs at Mormon plaza

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Aune_JonesA gay couple say they were detained by LDS security guards on a plaza owned by the Mormon church and later cited by police, claiming it stemmed from a kiss on the cheek.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints said that the men became argumentative and refused to leave after being asked to stop their “inappropriate behavior.” The men say they were targeted because they are gay.

Matt Aune said he and his partner, Derek Jones, were walking home from a concert nearby on Thursday night, cutting through the plaza near the Salt Lake City Mormon temple.

Aune, 28, said he gave Jones, 25, a hug and kiss and that the two were then approached by a security guard, who asked them to leave, telling them they were being inappropriate and that public displays of affection aren’t allowed on the property. He said other guards arrived and the men were handcuffed.

Police later arrived and both men were cited with misdemeanor trespassing, Salt Lake City Police Sgt. Robin Snyder said.

The Mormon church has been the target of protests over its support of Proposition 8, a ban on gay marriage in California.

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Filed under: Utah

4 more reader comments:

  1. Honestly, when I read “public displays of affection aren’t allowed on the property” I took that to mean across the board… gay or straight. And since it isn’t public property the determination about what’s appropriate and what’s not is really up to the owner. Kind of like My house, My rules. I doubt some of the things I’ve done in public would be welcome there either. I can respect that. Just my opinion.

    Posted on Wednesday, November 18, 2009 at 9:28pm
  2. Ugh, I bet if it was a straight couple, they would just turn a blind eye to it.
    Why do I say that? Because I see it all too much everywhere. I’d go to school and I literally see straight couples humping on each other and teachers and security guards would turn a blind eye even though it’s a rule that there shall be no PDA.

    Or how there would be those couples walking around a plaza at the center of my town with their hands together and lips would lock every 5 seconds.

    It’s no surprise that people freaked out over gay people kissing each other because they’re so intolerant of it goddamn, no PDA period and no condoning it.

    Posted on Wednesday, February 10, 2010 at 5:14am
  3. Well if god is love that church is godless. It's really hard to live in a world when your love the only love you cam have is considered evil by people that are acting in an evil way. Heart breaking is a good term to use here. In more resent times I have re-found my heart the one that I had to push away just to survive in my country that has claimed to be so free. It is progress for me to be able to say it is heart breaking and feel free to shed a tear not only for the ones that are deprived the right to cement their love as I am but for the ones so blind that feel another's love will steal theirs. Believe me when I say it is not spin but a very true statement it is the hate inside of a person that destroys their love not another feeling free to have that feeling. Love must be allowed to be felt it must be hoisted to the highest level. It must be honored for all that feel it. These men must be free to cry for the wrong that was committed against them. They must not be made to prove their love to others only to allow it to flow between them.

    Posted on Saturday, October 23, 2010 at 2:08am
  4. So Nothing has really changed in Utah :(

    For a church to be persecuted throughout it’s short history.

    Forced to leave the then United states into “Indian Territory” because in part to it’s beliefs in “Plural marriage” (Married and or being sealed to more than one wife) then have Governor Boggs Missouri Executive Order 44, also known as the “Mormon Extermination Order”[1] (alt. exterminating order) in Latter Day Saint history, was an executive order issued on October 27, 1838, by Governor of Missouri Lilburn Boggs. Issued in the aftermath of the Battle of Crooked River, a clash between Mormons and a unit of the Missouri State Guard that had only just been officially removed.

    To call it’s self directly after the name of Jesus Christ who said “I give a final commandment to love one another as I Love You!”

    Then to treat another human as sub human certainly says to the world. Another group that has not learnt from their sad history !
    As Joseph Smith was incarcerated in Liberty jail and persecuted, when Utah prison is the Vilest abusive prison in the USA proves again they “Come close to me with their lips and far from me with their hearts”. Words mean less than honest actions! So sad.

    Posted on Wednesday, August 17, 2011 at 10:08am