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Cop Discloses Man's HIV Status, Prompts Charges

Cop Discloses Man's HIV Status, Prompts Charges


A Michigan man will likely face felony charges after a police officer disclosed his HIV status to his ex-girlfriend, who was unaware her ex had HIV.

The man, who goes by the name Noah, told the Michigan Messenger that he was arrested for driving with a suspended license (he was found guilty of driving under the influence earlier this year). While in police custody in July, he worried that staying in jail for a full weekend without his medication would devastate his immune system after three years of treatment had lowered his viral load to undetectable levels.

When he shared his concerns with the officer, he was then asked whether his ex-girlfriend Susan, who was picking him up from the Branch County jail, knew he had HIV. He said she was not made aware, but the officer told her when she arrived at the station.

Noah and Susan stopped communicating with each other, and months went by. Eventually Noah heard from a Detroit-area detective, who notified him that Susan filed a complaint, and a judge ordered Noah to provide a blood test. Noah said he will likely face criminal charges for having sexual relations with her without disclosing his HIV-positive status, a violation of Michigan law. However, Jay Kaplan of the Michigan chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union said the officer may have violated the state's confidentiality law, which under most circumstances prohibits the disclosure of a person's HIV test results without that person's consent.

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