San Diego man, Thomas Miguel Guerra, pleads no contest to willfully spreading HIV

  • metta

    Posts: 39143

    Mar 10, 2015 5:42 AM GMT
    San Diego man pleads no contest to willfully spreading HIV


    "Thomas Miguel Guerra entered the plea Monday to violating a state health code against someone with a communicable disease willfully exposing others."


    http://www.lgbtqnation.com/2015/03/san-diego-man-pleads-no-contest-to-willfully-spreading-hiv/
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    Mar 10, 2015 7:11 PM GMT
    smh seems like this sexual predator's victims got a stiffer sentence than he did.
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    Mar 10, 2015 10:25 PM GMT
    Yes, people, there IS a dark stripe in the rainbow, too!
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    Mar 10, 2015 11:20 PM GMT
    "Currently, Guerra is only facing a single charge of spreading an infectious disease, a misdemeanor offense that carries a maximum sentence of six months and a $1,000 fine. Under California law, a person with a sexual disease must disclose to potential partners that he or she is infected.

    But Guerra’s accuser said he hoped his added allegations would boost the charge to a felony, which is punishable by up to eight years in prison.

    The city attorney’s office says there is an ongoing investigation as to whether there may be additional charges."

    If there were 100s of others, or only a few, it could prove a MUCH more serious charge.
  • jeepguySD

    Posts: 651

    Mar 11, 2015 2:19 AM GMT
    Guerra must have a serious psychological pathology -- almost certainly sociopathic. My heart goes out to his victims. I can hardly imagine how they must feel.
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    Mar 11, 2015 8:42 PM GMT
    While I agree there is a pathology to wanting to spread any kind of infection -- particularly to a partner who should have reason to trust you -- and I would never want ANYONE to contract HIV or any STI from someone, my question is this: Why did these other men not take responsibility for their own sexual health? They weren't being held at gunpoint or drugged and then assaulted. They willing had unprotected with someone they barely knew, apparently taking his word that he was negative (assuming they even asked him). In circumstances like these, these men have a certain amount of culpability here. HIV has been around over 30 years, and the knowledge of how to prevent spreading it (aka safer sex) has been around almost as long. As such, if you don't take precautions, you can't come away shocked that you have caught something. You can't cry foul because of your own poor judgment regardless of what someone feels the OTHER party's responsibility to you is.

    The rule of thumb is this: If you don't trust someone enough to leave them in your home while you're out of town, and you don't trust them enough to give them your ATM card & access code, don't even consider trusting them to have unprotected sex.
  • venue35

    Posts: 4644

    Apr 25, 2015 10:16 AM GMT
    I was almost raped once because someone drugged my drink.
    Thankfully I got sick before I passed out and threw up.
    Should I take half the blame for what happened???icon_rolleyes.gif
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    Apr 25, 2015 12:15 PM GMT
    xanadude said
    The rule of thumb is this: If you don't trust someone enough to leave them in your home while you're out of town, and you don't trust them enough to give them your ATM card & access code, don't even consider trusting them to have unprotected sex.

    I would suggest that is NOT the "rule of thumb". Safe Sex actually means assuming EVERY man is HIV poz or has an STD. Lending him your house keys does not make him sexually safe. He may have communicable diseases even HE doesn't know about.

    And should I tell you the cases I hear of "trusted" roommates who rob the apartment one day and skip town? It happened most recently to a friend of ours last year. He'd known the guy for years, even dated for a while, thought it was safe to let him move in.

    Unprotected sex should only take place with a 100% monogamous lover who's first been tested several times over a 6-month period. And even then you must deal with the risk that he'll succumb to temptation and cheat.

    Giving him your keys or bank card is not a substitute for medical testing and monogamy. I realize you may be using that as an example of a high level of trust, but it's an incomplete one without the full picture of what constitutes the actual steps that can allow unprotected sex to be considered.
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    Apr 28, 2015 8:10 PM GMT
    MuchMoreThanMuscle said
    xanadude said Why did these other men not take responsibility for their own sexual health? They weren't being held at gunpoint or drugged and then assaulted. They willing had unprotected with someone they barely knew, apparently taking his word that he was negative (assuming they even asked him). In circumstances like these, these men have a certain amount of culpability here. HIV has been around over 30 years, and the knowledge of how to prevent spreading it (aka safer sex) has been around almost as long. As such, if you don't take precautions, you can't come away shocked that you have caught something.


    ^ I agree with this 100%.

    I think the laws should require everyone to talk about HIV before they engage in sex. Don't just leave it up to the person with HIV+ to disclose his or her status. Require that everyone discuss the topic before they engage in sex. It won't be a foolproof method to completely eradicate the type of sociopathic behavior exhibited by Guerra but I think it would force people to be take more accountability for themselves. I believe it would create a notable decrease in HIV infections.

    People typically won't talk about crucial matters such as HIV before they engage in the most intimate and vulnerable act that two people can partake in with one another. They won't because it's not considered sexy or to them it ruins the moment. This approach needs to change and people should be open to discussion.


    MMTM, I have to disagree with you here. "Prosecutors say Guerra claimed to be HIV-negative and urged his boyfriend to have unprotected sex. The other man tested positive for HIV in May of 2013."

    We aren't talking about a POZ man who is on ART or using condoms, or just having oral sex. We have too many POZ men in prison who have NOT transmitted HIV, even though they are protecting their partner through legitimate risk reductions.

    From the DOJ
    "Generally, the best practice would be for states to reform these laws to eliminate HIV-specific criminal penalties except in two distinct circumstances. First, states may wish to retain criminal liability when a person who knows he/she is HIV positive commits a (non-HIV specific) sex crime where there is a risk of transmission (e.g., rape or other sexual assault). The second circumstance is where the individual knows he/she is HIV positive and the evidence clearly demonstrates that individual’s intent was to transmit the virus and that the behavior engaged in had a significant risk of transmission, whether or not transmission actually occurred.

    For states that choose to retain HIV-specific criminal laws or penalty enhancements beyond these two limited circumstances, the best practice would be to reform and modernize them so that they accurately reflect the current science of risk and modes of transmission, the quality of life and life span of individuals who are living with HIV, account for circumstances where the failure to disclose is directly related to intimate partner violence, and ensure they are the desired vehicle to achieve the states’ intended purpose in enacting them initially or retaining them in modernized form."

    https://aids.gov/federal-resources/national-hiv-aids-strategy/doj-hiv-criminal-law-best-practices-guide.pdf
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    Apr 30, 2015 6:36 PM GMT
    MuchMoreThanMuscle saidSo then, Timm. What are you saying you'd actually like to see happen?

    Should any penalty for lying about one's HIV status, which results in HIV infection, be eliminated altogether?


    No, if someone intentionally and willfully infects others (no condoms, not undetectable) they should be prosecuted as per the DOJ.
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    May 01, 2015 6:13 PM GMT
    MuchMoreThanMuscle said
    timmm55 said
    MuchMoreThanMuscle saidSo then, Timm. What are you saying you'd actually like to see happen?

    Should any penalty for lying about one's HIV status, which results in HIV infection, be eliminated altogether?


    No, if someone intentionally and willfully infects others (no condoms, not undetectable) they should be prosecuted as per the DOJ.


    I don't disagree with that. Intent to harm another should not go unpunished.

    What I was talking about were scenarios where people don't even discuss HIV at all.

    I thought I made myself clear.


    OK sorry, when I read "I think the laws should require everyone to talk about HIV before they engage in sex" and the other post you agreed with (I do too to some extent) "Why did these other men not take responsibility for their own sexual health?"

    You can never make a law to require that to the whole population. I 100% agree they should discuss!) But making any law that interferes in the bedroom or any private matter is fraught with danger.

    While rare, psychopaths like Guerra do exist. Through cunning and guile they expose people to HIV. I think the court should have mandated he to go on ART therapy and receive court follow ups to ensure compliance. And it would solve him being a problem in the future. Also psychological testing should have been required.

    I don't understand the "why" and that is still the problem.