This week read about Ju’Zema Goldring receiving $1.5M after being in jail on false drug charges in Georgia, and a man pleading guilty to threatening a Pride March in New York.
Trans Woman Awarded $1.5M After Being Jailed on False Drug Charges
Ju’Zema Goldring, a Black trans woman, was arrested in 2015 and spent six months in jail on false drug charges. In 2018, she filed a lawsuit against the arresting officers and in February was awarded $1.5 million.
Goldring said that when she was arrested, she was walking with some friends in Atlanta when two officers accused her of jaywalking — which she says she did not do. According to NY Daily News, the officers then searched her bag and found a stress ball. They cut open the stress ball to test for narcotics and despite not being found, Goldring was arrested for trafficking cocaine.
A grand jury decided that officer Vladimir Henry should pay and Judge William Ray II awarded the money to Goldring.
“The test was negative, and he charged her anyway,” Jeff Filipovits, one of Goldring’s attorneys, said in a statement. “Everyone on the jury saw that the test was negative. It should not have taken seven years and a federal jury trial to bring this to light.”
Her lawsuit states she was targeted because she “was apparently transgender and homeless.”
Man Who Threatened A Pride March Pleads Guilty
Photo via PxHere.
Robert Fehring, 74, pled guilty to sending a threatening letter to the organizers of the 2021 New York City Pride March.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, his letter said, “There will be radio-cont[r]olled devices placed at numerous strategic places, and firepower aimed at you from other strategic places” at the march. “This will make the 2016 Orlando Pulse Nightclub shooting look like a cakewalk.”
The Advocate reported that Fehring sent another threatening letter to a barbershop owner in Brooklyn. Through DNA evidence left on the letters, the FBI was able to identify Fehring.
He was arrested after the FBI’s Civil Rights Squad and the New York Joint Terrorism Task Force searched his home and found a number of items including stolen pride flags, stun guns, shotguns and ammunition, and an envelope containing a dead bird that was addressed to an LGBT rights lawyer.
Fehring still waits for his sentencing. The maximum possible sentence is five years.
“This office will use all of its available law enforcement tools to protect the safety and civil rights of the LGBTQ+ community,” said U.S. attorney Breon Peace.