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Top Stories This Week in the Chronicle.
June 24, 2005

Two Central State students are jailed after halting gay skit

Wilberforce, Ohio--Two gay college students are in jail after they interrupted a school-sanctioned skit that poked fun at gays.

Central State University juniors Anthony Cathey of Chicago and Yahieness Dixon of Mansfield were arrested June 9 by campus police and charged with disturbing a lawful meeting and inciting to violence. Dixon was also charged with assault.

The incident began when they turned off the lights in Robeson Auditorium during a skit they found offensive, which was directed by Phi Beta Sigma fraternity president Tygene Trammell.

According to reports, the skit showed gay men trying to join a sorority. It was part of a satire program called �Central, We Have a Problem?� described as real-life situations including domestic violence and roommate conflict.

The skit was approved by Dean of Students Al West, who was not available for comment due to illness.

Students said the skit was included in the program because gay students had worn fraternity or sorority dog tags to basketball games, which offended members of the organizations.

Central State is a traditionally black university with an active Greek campus system. It it one of only two state universities that does not protect its employees from discrimination by sexual orientation.

University police have not released all the details, but media accounts describe a fight which broke out when a disc jockey announced �these gay dudes are about to get their asses kicked� after the lights went off.

When that happened, according to reports, Dixon was hit in the back of the head by a fraternity member and other members joined in.

A university employee was hit by a two-by-four, allegedly swung by Dixon, and campus police broke up the incident.

Both gay students are being held in the Greene County Jail, so far unable to make the $10,000 bond.

Dixon�s lawyer, David Morse of Fairborn, said only the gay students were arrested, despite the incident being called a �melee� by the Xenia Daily Gazette.

Cathey does not have a lawyer yet.

Both were arraigned June 14 and pleaded not guilty to the charges. Trial dates have not been set.

The matter is before Xenia Municipal County Judge Susan L. Goldie.

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