The Slatest

Lesbian Couple Jailed After Kissing in Honolulu Receive $80,000 Settlement

Courtney Wilson (left) and Taylor Guerrero say they were arrested because a police officer disapproved of their public displays of affection.

Screenshot/Hawaii News Now

Courtney Wilson and Taylor Guerrero were grocery shopping on their second day of their vacation in Honolulu when a police officer apparently didn’t like them being affectionate with each other. Officer Bobby Harrison “observed their consensual romantic contact and, in a loud voice, ordered plaintiffs to stop and ‘take it somewhere else.’” The women then continued shopping but when Harrison spotted them kissing again he allegedly threatened to kick them out. Things then apparently got physical when the women were trying to check-out and the officer began threatening the couple with repercussions for their actions. At one point Harrison allegedly punched Guerrero in the face when she tried to push him away from Wilson.

The women were charged with felony assault and spent three days in jail in March. The grocery store surveillance videos somehow disappeared and charges were eventually dropped. But the women then filed their own lawsuit in October alleging their constitutional rights were violated. On Friday, the city announced it had reached an $80,000 settlement, noting that it did not amount to an admission of wrongdoing. Although the police department opened an investigation it isn’t clear whether Harrison suffered any repercussions for his actions. He retired two months after the lawsuit was filed.

The two women are no longer a couple. When they were released from jail they were ordered to stay on the island and when charges were dropped, Guerrero decided she liked living there. Wilson is back in Los Angeles. “I don’t really know what either of us were looking to get honestly,” Wilson told Hawaii News Now over the phone. “It wasn’t money or anything. We wanted to be compensated, but I think more or less we wanted Officer Harrison to suffer some sort of repercussions for his actions.”