UPDATE: KY county clerk refuses to issue gay marriage licenses, summoned to federal court
MOREHEAD, Ky. (AP) — An attorney says the Kentucky clerk who won't issue marriage licenses and all her deputy clerks have been called for a federal court hearing Thursday morning.
Rowan County Attorney Cecil Watkins says the federal court alerted him that a hearing is scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday in Ashland.
Watkins says clerk Kim Davis is summonsed to attend, along with all the deputy clerks who work in her office.
Davis stopped issuing licenses in the days after the U.S. Supreme Court legalized gay marriage. A federal judge ordered her to issue them, and an appeals court upheld that decision. Still, she turned away couples.
The Supreme Court declined to intervene on Monday, leaving Davis no legal grounds to refuse. But her office turned away several couples Tuesday morning. Davis invoked "God's authority" in doing so.
Attorneys for the two gay couples who originally sued in the case have asked U.S. District Judge David Bunning to hold Davis in contempt. They want Davis punished only with fees, not jail time.
Two gay couples have asked a federal judge to punish a Kentucky clerk who has refused to issue them marriage licenses by fining her, but not sending her to jail.
Lawyers for the couples filed the motion to hold Rowan County clerk Kim Davis in contempt of court on Tuesday morning, shortly after her office refused again to issue the licenses — this time despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling against her.
Davis says her office is doing so "under God's authority."
The latest motion in the case asks U.S. District Judge David Bunning to hold Davis in contempt. Bunning will probably hold a hearing for the gay couples to present evidence, which could include testimony from Davis herself. Bunning would then decide on punishment. That could include fines, jail time or both, but the motion asks the judge to impose only financial penalties.
The husband of a Kentucky county clerk who's refusing to issue gay marriage licenses despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling says his wife is committed to her faith and is "standing for God."
Joe Davis arrived at the Rowan County courthouse Tuesday morning to check on his wife, clerk Kim Davis, shortly after she again denied the licenses to several couples.
Joe Davis says his wife has received death threats, and the couple changed their phone number. But he says he's not afraid and believes in the Second Amendment.
He said: "I'm an old redneck hillbilly, that's all I've got to say. Don't come knocking on my door."
On Monday, the Supreme Court declined to intervene, leaving Kim Davis no legal grounds to refuse to grant licenses. A district judge could now hold her in contempt, which can carry steep fines or jail time.
Joe Davis compared his wife to the biblical figures Paul and Silas, sent to prison and rescued by God.
He pointed to the gay rights protesters gathered on the courthouse lawn and said: "They want us to accept their beliefs and their ways. But they won't accept our beliefs and our ways."
The office of a defiant county clerk in Kentucky has denied a marriage license to another gay couple.
On Tuesday morning, James Yates and Will Smith Jr. marched into Rowan County clerk Kim Davis' office. It was their fifth attempt to obtain a marriage license, and they once again were turned away.
They left red-eyed and shaking, and declined to talk to reporters gathered at the office.
Davis says her office is continuing to deny marriage licenses to gay couples "under God's authority."
She stopped issuing licenses the day the U.S. Supreme Court legalized gay marriage.
On Monday, the Supreme Court declined to intervene in the case, leaving Davis no legal grounds to refuse to grant licenses. A district judge could now hold her in contempt, which can carry steep fines or jail time.
After a defiant county clerk in Kentucky refused to issue marriage licenses to gay couples despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling, law enforcement authorities have cleared out the office of the hundreds of people packed inside to support both sides of the issue.
The sheriff's office in Rowan County told clerk Kim Davis' supporters and gay rights activists to leave on Tuesday morning.
The two groups lined up on either side of the courthouse entrance to chant at each other.
David Ermold has been rejected by Davis' office four times. He said: "I feel like I've been humiliated on such a national level."
He hugged David Moore, his partner of 17 years. They cried as Davis's supporters marched by shouting, "Stand firm."
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to intervene in the case, leaving Davis no legal grounds to refuse to grant licenses. A district judge could now hold her in contempt, which can carry steep fines or jail time
The rejected couples' supporters called the American Civil Liberties Union, which filed the lawsuit on their behalf. They asked that their attorneys file to have Davis held in contempt.
Randy Smith, leading the group supporting Davis, says he knows following their instruction to "stand firm" might mean Davis goes to jail on contempt charges.
He said: "But at the end of the day, we have to stand before God, which has higher authority than the Supreme Court."
A county clerk in Kentucky who is continuing to deny marriage licenses to gay couples says she's doing so "under God's authority."
Rowan County clerk Kim Davis emerged from her office Tuesday morning after some couples were denied the licenses. She asked David Moore and David Ermold, who've been rejected four times, to leave. They refused, surrounded by reporters and cameras.
Ermold said: "We're not leaving until we have a license."
Davis responded: "Then you're going to have a long day."
Davis' supporters whooped from the back of the room: "Praise the Lord" and "stand your ground."
Others shouted that Davis is a bigot and told her: "Do your job."
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to intervene in the case, leaving Davis no legal grounds to refuse to grant licenses to gay couples. A district judge could now hold her in contempt, which can carry steep fines or jail time.