Man Charged with Public Indecency After Using Women’s Changing Facilities in Xenia YMCA

A man stating that he identifies as a woman was charged with three counts of public indecency for using the women’s changing facilities at the Xenia YMCA. This comes just weeks after Green County prosecutor David Hayes requested an opinion from Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost clarifying if Ohio civil rights law requires local governments to permit individuals to use public restrooms according to their stated gender identity rather than their biological sex.

Darren Glines was accused of three charges of public indecency at Xenia Municipal Court for instances that occurred in September, November, and a third time between November 2021 and 2022 and involved three young girls. The accusations are all misdemeanors in the fourth degree.

According to the criminal complaint, the YMCA branch on Progress Drive in Xenia received “multiple allegations of a naked man in the females’ locker area.”

However, the YMCA allegedly informed the women in the locker room who filed the complaints that Glines “is actually a woman” and that they “shouldn’t be disturbed by this.”

Both public and private institutions throughout the state are up against questions and lawsuits over policies relating to biological males being permitted to use biological females’ public restrooms and changing facilities.

According to Hayes, this is a matter of increasing public importance and the law is unclear in these matters.

“Whenever there is an area of the law that is unclear, everyone benefits from some clarity,” Hayes said.

His request specifically asks for clarification on the Ohio Civil Rights Commission‘s (ORCC) authority in enforcing cases of sex and gender discrimination and if policies that limit an individual’s use of a restroom, changing room, or locker room to an individual’s biological sex would be a violation of Ohio law. The filing continued to inquire if those violations would come with civil liabilities and clarification on definitions of sex discrimination and public accommodations.

According to the YMCA of Greater Dayton, state anti-discrimination legislation requires them to permit individuals to use bathrooms, locker rooms, and changing areas that correspond to their gender identity rather than their biological sex. They noted that they have posted locker room rules that ask patrons to “keep fully covered while in public sections of the locker room.”

In a video on January 24th, Xenia council president Will Urschel said that if the city is successful in pursuing Glines, they might next pursue the YMCA of Greater Dayton for complicity.

The criminal prosecution, according to Urschel, is about upholding public decency standards regardless of gender, he said on Monday, adding that his views did not reflect those of the city of Xenia.

According to Urschel, Ohio’s ambiguous nondiscrimination rules are what caused the conflict between civil rights legislation and public decency standards. Urschel noted that Xenia may be able to use home rule under Ohio law to define sex inside city borders for legal purposes.

“Personally, if there’s this level of confusion, I think we should resolve that confusion. The pendulum has swung to where gender identity rights have trumped laws of privacy and public indecency. There’s things that we could do to address it in a more balanced way,” Urschel said.

According to a statement from the city of Xenia the city’s law department “has no plan or intention of bringing charges against the YMCA.”

Democrats went on the attack after hearing Urschel’s remarks.

“It’s extremely disappointing to see our elected officials that instead of focusing on the issues that are hurting people right now in Ohio, with inflation and good-paying jobs being harder to come by every day, this is what they’re focusing on,” Kim McCarthy, chair of the Greene County Democratic Party said.

The Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) said people have good reason to be wary of these policies.

“The presence of a male of any variety whether he’s someone who identifies as trans or not whether he has deviant motives or not is irrelevant to the reality that survivors of sexual trauma to just turn around and be exposed to that’s an instant trigger. Policies that open up bathrooms and locker rooms to members of the opposite sex send the message that privacy and safety do not matter,” ADF said.

Pastor Mark Atherton of Xenia Nazarene Church noted that the science of gender is fixed it does not evolve and that the YMCA needs to stop enabling these confused individuals and rather speak the truth.

“Those who are confused about their gender need help recognizing the truth. Our feelings don’t determine our age, height, or race…all things dramatically less important than sex. Please understand that the problem is not with the gender-confused person. It’s with the YMCA, and with society as a whole, who won’t give these people the truth. The truth is the most compassionate help we can give these people to correct the issue in their mind. After all, science is real—males are males are females are females. The science on this issue is fixed and does not evolve,” Atherton said.

Ohio’s largest Christian public policy organization, the Center for Christian Virtue (CCV) said that “this is a huge opportunity for women’s and girls’ rights to safety and privacy to be properly recognized.”

Hayes’s request for an opinion from the Ohio Attorney General’s Office is still pending at this time.

Glines is due in court on February 6th.

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Hannah Poling is a lead reporter at The Ohio Star and The Star News Network. Follow Hannah on Twitter @HannahPoling1. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Xenia YMCA” by Xenia YMCA. 




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