The Herald, Sharon, Pa.

Local News

May 8, 2009

UPDATE: GCC student suspended for off-campus participation in online gay porn

(Continued)



Soon after the initial April 24 meeting, Gechter contacted Pittsburgh attorney Eric Davis of Fried & Davis, L.L.C., who took on his case. Gechter also said he spoke with Gary A. Van Horn Jr., president of the Pittsburgh Delta Foundation, which aims to improve the lives for the gay community in the area, and the American Civil Liberties Union.

In a letter directed to Hardesty, both Van Horn Jr. and Davis assert that Gechter has “faced significant discrimination and an unfair ultimatum in the situation regarding his expulsion.”

“Even if John were an actor in the adult industry, in no way is his image as a performer associated with anything on campus,” the letter continued. “In fact, the identity of performers is a priority in the adult industry and it would be extremely difficult to prove if the person performing in these materials is even John, much less associate him with the college.”

When performing under the Vincent DeSalvo alias, no connection could be made between Gechter’s work in the porn industry and GCC, Gechter noted.

“None (of my performances) were on the college campus and there is nothing explicitly or implicitly linked to GCC,” he said. “I was performing for my audience.”

While the reaction from GCC administration disappointed him, Gechter added that the response from his peers upset him even more. The majority of students were hostile toward him once the news broke, he said.

“I received about 150 hate mails from students, which surprised me,” he said. “Students were the first ones to condemn and judge me, and I was really saddened by their response.”

Ms. Clingensmith said she did not know about the hate mail.

“There were some students who supported me, but I could count them on one hand,” Gechter added. “A lot of my friends look at me differently now.”

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