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Officer Firing Upheld
Rocky Mountain, CO: (Mar-06-08) Michael Bethel, a former Pueblo, CO police officer, and his wife Tammy Bethel, brought a lawsuit against the city of Pueblo, alleging that Michael was fired because he and his wife have a "cuckold" relationship. In the federal lawsuit filed in 2007, Michael and Tammy Bethel said that Tammy Bethel is free to have sex with other people, as long as they are not married or minors and provided she tells her husband. Michael Bethel, however, is not allowed to have sex with others, although he sometimes joins his wife when she is with others.
Their suit claimed that when this arrangement became known to the Pueblo Police Department, it led to Michael Bethel's termination. City officials denied the allegation, saying Bethel's dismissal stemmed from his actions while on duty. Bethel was fired in 2006. Four days later, he was charged with witness tampering and official misconduct. Prosecutors said Bethel tried to persuade a man not to testify in a burglary case because he was afraid the evidence would include a videotape of his wife having sex with the man. A judge threw out one charge and a jury acquitted Bethel on the other charge.
As part of a settlement reached, Michael and Tammy Bethel will receive a $20,000 award from the city to resolve the lawsuit. The city denied any liability, agreeing to settle solely to avoid the costs of litigation. [
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Last updated on Mar-8-08
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