Al Gerhardstein

20th Century Fox has bought movie rights about how Over-the-Rhine resident Jim Obergefell and  Cincinnati attorney Al Gerhardstein won the Supreme Court ruling for same-sex marriage last month.

The New York Times says the studio also obtained film rights to “21 Years to Midnight,” the book Obergefell and Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Debbie Cenziper plan to write about Obergefell’s relationship with John Arthur, his partner of more than 20 years. The two married in 2013 in Maryland, where same-sex marriage was legal, when Arthur was in the final stages of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig's disease. He died later that year.

Wyck Godfrey and Marty Bowen – both producers on the “Twilight” movies and “The Fault in our Stars” – will produce the film, according to wire reports.

Tana Weingartner / WVXU

After years of legal limbo for same-sex couples in four states including Ohio and Kentucky, the U.S. Supreme Court has reversed an appeals court decision, deciding that same-sex couples have the right to marry in all 50 states.

On most Sundays, this space is devoted to partisan politics.

Not this Sunday. This Sunday it is time to step back and look at the long career of a man who transcended politics – Senior Judge S. Arthur Spiegel of the U.S. District Court, Southern District of Ohio. 

He passed away this past week at the age of 94. And, when word came out of his passing, there was a profound sense of loss among his friends, his fellow judges, and the many lawyers who appeared before him over the past 34 years – Democrat and Republican alike.

  Tension has been running high in Ferguson, Missouri as the community awaits a decision from a grand jury on whether a  police officer will be indicted for the shooting death of an unarmed black teen. Some experts say there could be riots similar to what happened in Los Angeles in 1992 in the Rodney King case if there's no indictment.

Michael E. Keating



A federal appeals court in Cincinnati is scheduled to hear arguments Wednesday on the constitutionality of same-sex marriage bans in six separate cases involving four states.

The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals will consider challenges to state same-sex marriage bans in Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee and Michigan.

So many reporters and court observers are expected the court will have two overflow rooms with live audio streaming of the oral arguments.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine is appealing two local cases:

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Six Cincinnati same-sex couples have filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against The Director of the Ohio Department of Health and the Director of the Hamilton County Probate Court .

The suit seeks to "secure for same-sex couples across Ohio the right to marry on an equal basis with opposite-sex couples."

The Plaintiffs are Michelle Gibson and Deborah Meem; Heather Apple and Mary Koehler; Ronald Kastner Beck and Dave Beck; Andrew Hickman and Ethan Fletcher; Gary Goodman and Karl Rece, Jr.; and Rhonda Craig and Kendra Dukes.

U.S. Government

Federal Judge Timothy Black  has decided Ohio's same sex marriage recognition ban will remain in place while his decision is being appealed. (meaning same-sex couples cannot go to other states, get married and have those marriages recognized in Ohio during the appeal of this case) The exception is the four couples who sued. Their marriages will be recognized and their names will go on the birth certificates of their children.

From Judge Timothy Black's decision

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Federal Judge Timothy Black ruled as he said he was going to, striking down a portion of Ohio's gay marriage ban that blocks recognition of same-sex marriages performed in other states. (there is a stay on the order except for the four couples involved. Attorney Al Gerhardstein says the earliest the stay would be lifted is Wednesday.)

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Monday is the day Federal Judge Timothy Black says he will rule in the case of four same-sex couples who want to get their names on their children's birth certificates.

Their request goes beyond what attorney Al Gerhardstein had originally asked in the February lawsuit. He broadened it to request the judge strike down a portion of Ohio's gay marriage ban, passed by voters in 2004.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

Update: Federal Judge Timothy Black says he will issue a ruling by April 14 striking down a portion of Ohio's gay marriage ban passed by voters in 2004. Attorney Al Gerhardstein, representing plaintiffs in a lawsuit about birth certificates, amended his request to ask Black to declare all aspects of Ohio's gay marriage ban unconstitutional. (except the part about getting married in Ohio, because his clients were already married) In federal court Friday morning, the judge said he would do that.

Ann Thompson / WVXU

A lawsuit filed Monday in Cincinnati seeks a federal court order requiring Ohio to put the names of both people in same-sex marriages on the birth certificates of their children.

The plaintiffs include three lesbian couples who were married in other states where same-sex marriage is legal. All live in Greater Cincinnati. One of the women in each marriage is pregnant through artificial insemination. The babies will be born in Cincinnati hospitals in the next few months.

They are represented by attorney Al Gerhardstein.

Baltimore Sun

A terminally ill Cincinnati man, who traveled to Maryland to marry his partner, has died. John Arthur married Jim Obergefell in July on the tarmac because Arthur, who had ALS, was too sick to get off his stretcher.

Court case continues

Shortly after they married, the couple filed a federal lawsuit challenging Ohio's marriage law, in part so they could be buried together in Arthur's family plot.


The family of a Cincinnati man who was Tased and then died last year, has filed suit against the City of North College Hill and one of its police officers.

Attorney Al Garhardstein, representing the family of Corey McGinnis Sr., says Sgt. Ryan Schrand hit McGinnis in the chest after an altercation at a basketball game. Gerhardstein says this happened more than two years after Taser International issued a warning to police to avoid the chest area.

WVXU file photo

The family of a man who died after being tased by a University of Cincinnati police officer has settled its claims with the university and officer Richard Haas.  After Everette Howard Jr. died in August 2011, UC police took all of their Tasers out of service.