William Campbell is suing New York’s Metropolitan Transit Authority after he was humiliated and arrested while trying to use the bathroom in Grand Central Terminal. After being exonerated by a jury, Campbell is telling his story of police brutality and homophobia.
In an all too common experience for gay men in America, Campbell says an MTA police officer tried to induce him to have sex and despite being rejected, the cop arrested him without cause.
Court documents say Campbell was using the restroom when a “man using the urinal next to petitioner leaned over and looked at petitioner’s penis.” When Campbell “pushed the man away,” he says say the undercover cop jumped him, shouting, “What are you doing, you fucking faggot?” and calling him a “dirty homo.”
After cuffing Campbell so tightly his wrists bled, the unidentified officer marched him out of the bathroom, yelling “another pee-pee case!”
Campbell, who was charged with endangering the welfare of a child, criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree, exposure of a person, and public lewdness, was exonerated on all charges by a jury after numerous court appearances.
The criminal complaint “falsely stated that there were children in the restroom at the time petitioner was using the urinal, there were no children in the area; that petitioner unlawfully exposed his penis, he did not, he was using the urinal; and that petitioner was carrying in his backpack a knife with a 10-inch blade, he was not in possession of a knife,” the lawsuit says.
Police have entrapped gay men at public restrooms for decades and still try to justify the practice today. Male cops will normally enter a restroom, show their penis to anyone who will look, masturbate, and try to look at other men’s penises.
When a man responds – either by indicating arousal or responding to the officer – he is arrested. Many victims report that the officer will wait until after sexual activity has occurred before making the arrest.
It’s common for the men’s names to be published in local newspapers when police announce the arrests as particularly salacious. Numerous men – both gay and straight – who have been entrapped in the dangerous practice have died of suicide following their public humiliation.
Straight couples busted having sex in public are generally left alone and do not normally have their names published if they’re arrested.