Gay Clerk Says Homophobes Burned Down His House As Neighbors Pulled Up Chairs And Watched

Randy Gamel-Medler is suing Oklahoma officials for reportedly allowing his family to be abused.

An Oklahoma man has filed a federal lawsuit after claiming that his family was subjected to abuse and became victims of arson by people trying to drive him out of town.

Randy Gamel-Medler moved to Hitchcock, Oklahoma with his husband and seven-year-old son in 2016, and says he quickly got involved in local politics and became the town clerk—a decision he thinks led to his family becoming a target for bigoted abuse.

“I think once I became clerk, and they found out they had a queer clerk with a black kid running the city, it just drove them crazy and they couldn’t take it,” he told U.S. News.

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The 59-year-old said his family faced a barrage of attacks, including a sign outside the post office that read, “The town clerk is a fucking queer,” and a woman who tried to break into his car and shouted, “I’m going to grab your little boy, rip his n***er head off, and shit down his throat.” He added that the sheriff’s department cited freedom of speech as its reason for not doing anything about the abuse.

The former clerk, who has since moved to Texas, also alleged in his complaint that when a town trustee found out that his son was African American, he asked, “What’s going to happen when your house burns down and we don’t send out the fire trucks?”

On May 28, Gamel-Medler said that’s exactly what happened. He claims that after hearing the sound of glass breaking in the garage, the house went up in flames and was destroyed, despite the fire department being located one block away. He also alleged that the police chief joined several of his neighbors in sitting in lawn chairs and watching his home burn to the ground.

Blaine County Undersheriff David Robertson refutes these accusations, suggesting that Gamel-Medler was a “bully” who consistently tried to undermine town officials.

“I got to know him very well from all the complaints and allegations that he made, and I cannot find one person who made any racist statements against his child or against him for being a homosexual,” Robertson told the Associated Press. “We don’t take too kindly to being called racist and homophobic, because we’re not.”

Gamel-Medler denies the allegation that he started the fire, saying, “We lost everything from 27 years. Everything that we had is gone.”
 
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