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Gay Couple Sues Airline Over Sex Toy Prank

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Thursday Aug 30, 2012
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A gay couple from Virginia filed a lawsuit against Continental Airlines and claims some of the company’s employees humiliated them by taping their personal dildo to the outside of their luggage, SF (San Francisco) Weekly reported.

Christopher Bridgeman and Martin Borger, who reside in Norfolk, Va., are suing the airlines and say the workers went through their belongings, took a dildo out of their bag and taped it to their luggage, which humiliated the couple as everyone in baggage claim could see their personal sex toy.

According to the lawsuit, the couple is seeking damages for intentional infliction of emotional distress, invasion of privacy and negligence.

"Upon arriving in Norfolk, plaintiffs exited the aircraft and went to the baggage claim area," the complaint states. "Plaintiffs’ bags were sent to the baggage carousel where plaintiffs discovered, to their horror, that a private sex toy had been removed from one of their bags, covered in a greasy foul-smelling substance and taped prominently to the top of their bag."

Borger, 35, told NBC News that thinking about the incident "still bring butterflies to my stomach."

A spokeswoman for Continental said in a statement that the company has launched a thorough investigation and said there is no support for the couple’s accusations, NBC News noted.

"United does not tolerate discrimination of any kind," Christen David said. "We will vigorously defend ourselves and our employees."

The complaint states that the men suffered a "high degree of shock and embarrassment" and that they had to call two friends to the airport to help them. The report goes on to say that witnesses laughed when they saw the dildo taped to their bag, which also caused the men to have server emotional trauma.

"I knew exactly what it was when I saw it," Borger said. "I was absolutely and utterly shocked and embarrassed and humiliated and I didn’t even know what to do at the time."

They said the baggage handlers knew that the sex toy belonged to two males because the couple’s names were on their luggage. They said they believe they were the subject of the prank because of their sexuality.

"I absolutely, fervently believe that this was intentional," Bridgeman, 34, said. "It was very sick and it was very wrong and it was just maliciously taped to the top and targeted because we’re gay."

The couple’s attorney, Harry Scarborough, would not say how much the money the men are suing for, but the lawsuit is requesting mental anguish damages, attorney fees and expenses. Scarborough said that the couple doesn’t travel much anymore because of the incident.

Comments

  • Anonymous, 2012-08-30 09:29:14

    Unbelievable.


  • Anonymous, 2012-08-30 11:58:53

    they were embarrassed at the airport of strangers, but not to have their names and a picture of said embarrassing items in a national news magazine? please


  • Anonymous, 2012-08-31 03:02:51

    Why would anyone fly with such private thing as a sex toy knowing that you have almost zero expectation of privacy at the airport these days?


  • Anonymous, 2012-09-01 11:14:10

    I suppose the potential monetary compensation for such atrocious ""hijinks" eases the initial embarrassment of viral status and a potential interview by Matt Lauer.


  • Anonymous, 2012-09-01 11:36:43

    Forgot to add: these guys deserve every penny they get from the airlines for their lowest bid, comedian,ex-con luggage handlers.


  • crista sadler, 2012-09-02 06:55:25

    next time dont bring a dildo in a public space!case dismissed...


  • Anonymous, 2012-09-02 10:55:16

    Its a shame that in this day and age we still have to put up with this crap


  • Anonymous, 2012-09-02 12:33:04

    Regardless if traveling with sex toys is the best decision the representative of the airlines went above and beyond simple poor judgement.


  • Anonymous, 2012-09-02 12:50:06

    After how many false cries of wolf? ...meh grow up, I’m sure that’s not the first time that dildo has been "greasy" and "foul-smelling", so why worry? Are you not secure in your sexuality?


  • Anonymous, 2012-09-03 10:08:19

    I can see where the airline employees in Norfolk should have sent the bag to the ticket counter to be claimed, in private, to avoid having that in a public space. However, there are so many unanswered questions of who had the time to do that (departing city?), was it TSA security (those things show up in baggage scanners), was it a battery powered device that turned on? Was the bag overpacked and it split open revealing said toy? Next time guys, put that kind of thing in your carry on, if they screen your bag at security, you can ask for a private screening (then only two people will know what you’re into). Find it hard to believe that airline employees did this. Maybe TSA screeners, but it depends on where couple departed from. Were they traveling internationally? Who has time to grease a dildo when you are loading bags? So, who taped the bag with such a nice carry handle? I bet their fingerprints are all over the tape!


  • David Seidel, 2012-09-06 15:41:43

    Sure, we have no expectation of privacy perhaps, but does that mean that it’s okay for this to happen? Assuming the allegations are true, it’s ridiculous to think that people are okay with it happening simply because they feel that today’s climate of (false) security means that their lives and belongings are an open book.


  • Anonymous, 2012-09-07 17:58:00

    I agree David but passengers are now treated like inmates in a prison.


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