Friday, September 17, 2004

Gay man cheers arrest in case

By Travis Gettys
Enquirer contributor

NEWPORT - Carl Fox said the death threat he received last year was not the first time he's been victimized because he's an openly gay man who speaks his mind, but he said the arrest of a suspect in the case is an encouraging sign.

Fox, 46, said he has been threatened and assaulted and had his property damaged many times because of his sexual orientation.

But he said police and prosecutors haven't always vigorously pursued the perpetrators.

"I've been told in the past, 'There's no hate-crime legislation, so there's nothing we can do,' " said Fox, owner of Newport's Crazy Fox Saloon.

Arthur Deitz, 55, of Golf Manor was indicted Sept. 10 in federal court on two counts of sending threatening communication through the mail and was arrested later that day. He is accused of sending Nazi-themed letters to Fox and a Kenton County defense attorney.

Deitz, described to Fox by authorities as a loner who works as a landscaper, will go to trial Nov. 8 in federal court, where he faces five years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years' probation if convicted.

Fox, an outspoken supporter of gay rights, received a letter Dec. 27, 2003, warning him that his name had been added to a hit list, and the unidentified lawyer received a nearly identical one Dec. 26, 2001, with a reference to one of the attorney's clients.

Although Deitz, who is out of jail but must wear a monitoring device, is not charged with a hate crime, Fox said such laws have encouraged victims to report crimes based on their sexual orientation.

Residents of the neighborhood where Fox operates his bar rallied behind him after he received the letter - raising $1,200 in reward money for anyone with information leading to an arrest and a conviction.

An unidentified person could be eligible for that money, said FBI agent Doug Warner, and members of the East Row Historic Foundation are gathering pledges made early this year.

"Newport is a very diverse city, and we're very proud of that diversity," said Bob Yoder, who helped raise the money. "One of our neighbors was threatened, and we thought that what we could do is stand by him."

Minor parties, major ambition
Edwards attacks Bush's record on economy, Iraq

Feds tighten airport screening
Islet cell transplants on hold
Cincinnati cops nearly done with CPR update
Locals lend hand to victims of storms
Senators hear doctors' complaints about costs
Relative takes up fight for justice
Fire union lists ways to save
Group disputes petition validity
Driver who killed woman sentenced to three years
Ex-cop faces trial in wife's '95 death
Once again, teens mourn loss of peer to car wreck
What's recyclable? A lot more items

N.Ky. counts its successes
Gay man cheers arrest in case
Maysville celebrates retaining newspaper
Kentucky news briefs
Kentucky obituaries

School music makes comeback
1-day walkout may be voted
Fairfield faces academic cuts if levy fails again
Shell asked to help district

Neighborhood briefs

Downs: Don't make P. Diddy beg; vote, you kids
Good Things Happening

Gordon Brisker, musician and master teacher

City embraces jam-packed Fusion
Wanna party? Sports, music, Oktoberfest await
Best places to eat
What's new downtown, on riverfront
Big events fill the weekend
Downtown event map (PDF)
More Big Weekend coverage