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Press Release
For Immediate Release

Contact: Keith Kimmel
Ph: 405.795.3800
E-mail: keithontap@gmail.com

(Norman, OK) Keith Kimmel, the man who filed a lawsuit earlier this year against the State of Oklahoma’s Tax Commission to secure a personalize license plate, says he was the victim of a gay bashing at the hands of the Tulsa, Oklahoma Police Department this weekend and has filed a complaint.

On Monday March 29, 2009, he filed a complaint by US Mail with the Internal Affairs Department of the Tulsa Police Department, claiming that he had been dragged across a parking lot, punched in the testicles and verbally assaulted by officers of The Tulsa Police Department after being involved in a fight at a Tulsa gay bar. The complaint included pictures of injuries Kimmel sustained in the incident. The complaint was filed by mail after Kimmel was unable to reach the Internal Affairs Department all day by telephone to find out how it could be faxed or e-mailed. “I would like to get this information into the hands of the Internal Affairs Officers as early as possible, but I have tried calling all day and have been directed to voicemail. I tried calling various other offices within the department, but they continually redirect me back to the Internal Affairs number that no one answers”, Kimmel said.

Kimmel says he isn’t sure if the incident comes as retaliation for his earlier suit against the state. “I do not know if someone in the Tulsa Police Department has taken it upon themselves to dole out justice in their own way because of the suit, but what I do know is there has been alot of media coverage about the case in Tulsa, and I think its something that should at least be looked into. Regardless of why it happened, it was completely unacceptable and unprofessional. I am currently seeking the advice of an attorney on the matter and will pursue the internal complaint procedure of the Tulsa Police Department to the fullest extent possible in the meantime.”

In the complaint, Kimmel asks the Tulsa Police Department to utilize the recently passed federal hate crimes legislation to ask the Federal Bureau of Investigation to help investigate the incident, despite the fact that Oklahoma State Senator Steve Russell has recently introduced legislation designed to allow Oklahoma to “opt out” of the new law. “Senator Russell may belive that the protections of the new federal hate crimes law are not needed here in Oklahoma, but I think I have just learned how sorely they are needed in a very personal way. This is not an issue where TPD should be allowed to investigate itself, an unbiased party should be brought into to examine the incident throughly and through an unbiased lens.”

A copy of Kimmel’s complaint may be downloaded in Adobe PDF format (6.17 MB) by going to: http://files.me.com/keithkimmel/l4g041.

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On February 10, 2010, I – through my attorney Brittany M. Novotnyfiled a civil lawsuit against The Oklahoma Tax Commission in The Oklahoma County District Court. The case seeks to have certain sections The Oklahoma Administrative Code (specifically, sections of O.A.C 710:60-3-150) dealing with the content and issuance of personalized license plates declared unconstitutional. You can follow the case on it’s Facebook page.

The press release issued upon filing was as follows:

For Immediate Release
Contact: Keith Kimmel, 405.886.5095, http://tinyurl.com/otcplatecase

Oklahoma City, OK – An Oklahoma taxpayer has filed a civil lawsuit in Oklahoma County District Court against the Oklahoma Tax Commission, continuing a battle for freedom of speech on vanity license plates. The suit seeks to have part of the Commission’s rules regarding the issuance of personalized license plates declared unconstitutional.

Keith Kimmel, who filed the suit through his attorney, provided the following statement: “The Oklahoma Tax Commission is continuing to subject Oklahomans to a subjective decision making process in issuing personalized vanity license plates. Under our state Constitution, all Oklahomans enjoy the right to freedom of speech and an equal opportunity to express their viewpoints. Previous testimony in the administrative proceedings held on this matter have shown that the Commission is selectively granting and denying applications based on Commission employees’ own personal prejudices and viewpoints. The Constitution requires that state rules are viewpoint neutral, with an objective standard that puts the taxpayer on notice of what is legal and what is not. This suit is intended to put an end to the Tax Commission’s unconstitutional practice of subjecting taxpayers to the whim of individual employees.”

The case is Keith Kimmel v. State of Oklahoma, ex rel, Oklahoma Tax Commission, Oklahoma County Case No. CJ-2010-1072.

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