Lawsuit: St. Louis County officer told to tone down gayness

Sgt. Keith Wildhaber

Sgt. Keith Wildhaber

CLAYTON, Mo. (AP) _ A St. Louis County police sergeant alleges in a lawsuit against the department that he was told to “tone down” his gayness if he wanted a promotion.

The lawsuit was filed in January by Sgt. Keith Wildhaber, a 22-year veteran of the department.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that Wildhaber accuses John Saracino, a former member of the county’s police board, of making the comment.

Saracino told the newspaper the alleged conversation never occurred.

Wildhaber also alleges he was passed over for promotions, even though he had received excellent reviews. And he contends he was reassigned to a late shift farther from his home after he filed discrimination complaints in April 2016.

A spokesman for Chief Jon Belmar says Belmar wouldn’t comment on the lawsuit.