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Lesbian Couple's Campaign Fundraiser Ends With Arrests, Pepper-Spray

Lesbian Couple's Campaign Fundraiser Ends With Arrests, Pepper-Spray

A campaign fundraiser thrown by a lesbian couple for Francine Busby, a Democrat seeking the 50th Californian Congressional District seat in 2010, ended with two arrests, bruises and a cloud of pepper spray.

A campaign fundraiser thrown by a lesbian couple for Francine Busby, a Democrat seeking the 50th Californian Congressional District seat in 2010, ended with two arrests, bruises and a cloud of pepper spray.

Busby is now demanding an explanation from the Sheriff’s Department, which broke up the fundraiser, arrested the host and responded to a noise complaint with questionable force.

Shari Barman, 60, hosted the event at her home with her partner Jane Stratton in Cardiff by the Sea, Calif. Busby described the event as a “quiet home reception” with a half hour period during which Busby used a microphone to address the gathering.

However, The San Diego Union Tribune reports that at 9:33 p.m, local police received a call from a man alleging that someone was still using the a megaphone, and that crowd noise was keeping him awake.

The Union Tribune also reported that while Busby spoke, a man shouted “disparaging remarks” regarding Busby and members of the LGBT community from the property behind Barman’s home. Neighbors from three sides of the home had no complaints, including one man who slept through it.

An officer reportedly said he felt threatened while responding to the call. After Barman refused to give the officer her birth date and walked away from the officer, she was placed under arrest for suspicion of battery on a police officer and resisting, delaying and obstructing a peace officer. Barman said in a statement that the officer forced her to the ground and twisted her arm in the process.

Stratton told the Union Tribune that she was knocked to the ground after she warned the officer of Barman’s recent shoulder surgery.

Seven deputies, a sergeant and a helicopter were dispatched to control a crowd of 30-50 middle-aged people.

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