Jubilee Theatre puts Garrett on administrative leave following arrest

Beacham.Declois(Tre Garrett)

Declois Garrett Beacham, aka Tre Garrett

The executive committee of the Jubilee Theatre Board of Trustees announced today (Monday, Feb. 2), that Tre Garrett, the theater’s artistic director, has been placed on paid administrative leave, effective immediately, pending further developments regarding the criminal charges pending against him.

Garrett, identified in the warrant for his arrest as Declois Garrett Beacham, was arrested Friday morning, Jan. 30, by Fort Worth police on two counts of compelling prostitution involving a child under 18 years old. The charge is a first degree felony.

(A search of public records shows a Texas driver’s license issued to Declois Beacham Garrett III of Fort Worth, with the same date of birth as Declois Garrett Beacham as noted in the arrest warrant. There is no license for Declois Garrett Beacham.)

According to the press release sent out by Jubilee officials, Managing Director Glenda Thompson has been appointed to “manage normal operations of the skilled artistic  staff as well” while Garrett is on leave. Performances of the theater’s current production, In Real Life, continue through March 1, theater officials said, and the next production — Don’t Bother Me, I Can’t Cope — will be directed by Akin Babatunde and will run April 3-May 3.

Garrett, 34, as been Jubilee’s artistic director since the end of the 2011-2012 season “and has not shown any indication that he would participate in the type of behavior he is accused of,” the executive committee’s press release said. “He has done excellent work during his tenure.”

The executive committee’s statement also said that the theater has “begin its own internal investigation and will take further action as warranted. Outside legal counsel will also be hired to help with this process. Jubilee Theatre strongly believes that Mr. Garrett’s alleged actions are not a reflection of Jubilee Theatre, which has been in operation for 34 years with an ongoing excellent reputation.”

According to the arrest warrant issued for Garrett, a Fort Worth Police detective responded on Jan. 9 to a residence near the intersection of Rosedale and Loop 820, on Fort Worth’s east side, to investigate a report that a light-skinned black male driving a silver BMW had approached a 17-year-old boy walking home from Dunbar High School. The teen said the man asked him first if he knew of anyone who would give him a blow job for $100, and when the teenager said no, the man in the BMW offered him $100 for a blow job. The teen declined and fled when the man told him to get in the car.

On Jan. 12, detectives responded to reports of an attempted kidnapping in the 5300 block of Rosedale, several blocks away from the location of the first report. The victim, an 11-year-old boy, told police that a man in a gray BMW asked him if he wanted to earn $100. When the boy, who was standing with a 10-year-old friend in the common area of their apartment complex, said yes, the man told the two boys to meet him at the rear gate of the apartment complex.

When the boys met the man at the rear gate, he showed them $100 in cash and told the 11-year-old to get in the car. The 11-year-old got in the car and as the car drive away, the 10-year-old friend went and told the other boy’s mother what had happened. The 11-year-old later told police he was paid $100 to mow the suspect’s grass. But he later told the officer that he was paid $100 to perform oral sex on the suspect, and that he had lied because he was afraid he would get in trouble with his parents because of the sexual activity.

The 11-year-old later changed his story again, telling police that the suspect had tried to “put his mouth on the victim’s ‘middle part,’” but that he had fought the man off and ran away with the money. The boy then pulled $100 in $20 bills from his pocket and gave the money to the officer.

On Jan. 13, one of the officers who responded to the attempted kidnapping call saw a silver 2006 BMW 325i, registered to Declois Garrett Beacham, driving near the 11-year-old’s apartment. He radioed the information to other officers in the area, who then stopped the BMW for crossing a solid white line. The driver was identified as Beacham/Garrett.

Both the 17-year-old and the 11-year-old later picked Beacham/Garrett out of a photo lineup, identifying him as the man who had approached them and offered them money for oral sex.

On Jan. 27, Beacham/Garrett agreed to an interview with police, telling investigators that he is often in the area of the 5400 block of East Rosedale because is a member of the Young Men’s Leadership Academy School board and mentors a 19-year-old boy who lives nearby. He also said that his favorite restaurant is in that area, and that he has friends who live on East Rosedale. He said he sometimes picks up his friends at their apartment complex, and that he usually waits for them near the gate to the complex.

Beacham/Garrett said he often sees children near the apartment complex while waiting for his friends, but denied ever having spoken with any of them. He also denied ever having offered anyone money for sexual favors.

According to the warrant, bond was set at $25,000, with special conditions requiring that Beacham/Garrett have no contact with the victim, no contact with the victim’s family and no contact with any child under the age of 17.

—  Tammye Nash

New block party added to Tarrant Pride celebration

Parade, picnic highlight week of gay, lesbian Pride events in Fort Worth

DAVID TAFFET  |  Staff Writer taffet@dallasvoice.com

Tarrant County Pride
MARCHING THROUGH | Celebration Community Church celebrated the anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion with a float in a previous Tarrant County Gay Pride Parade depicting a high-heeled shoe kicking down a wall.

Dallas isn’t alone in holding Pride in a month other than June. Fort Worth’s 29th Pride parade will take place two weeks after the Dallas event, on Oct. 3.

A week of Pride events begins with a Sunday afternoon parade on South Jennings Avenue that steps off at 2 p.m.

“The parade is going to change directions,” said Tarrant County Gay Pride Week Association President Jody Wasson.

The route will be reversed from previous years, heading toward downtown. Line-up will be on South Jennings Avenue at Rosedale, where the parade traditionally has ended.
“What’s new this year is the block party,” said Wasson.

The intersection of South Jennings and Pennsylvania avenues near the new end of the parade route will be blocked off for a street party starting at noon. He said the block party will include entertainment through the afternoon and food, soft drinks, beer and wine will be available.

“There will be an area for the kids and for pets,” he said. “Even your pets have Pride.”

Tony Coronado of the TCGPWA committee said that anyone can enter their dogs in the parade. They will compete in small, medium and large categories. From the winners, a king and queen will be chosen who will preside over next year’s Pride Pets competition.

Although it rained last year, that parade was the largest in Fort Worth history, coming just months after the Rainbow Lounge raid.

Wasson said he couldn’t predict participation in this year’s parade and that applications are just now coming in.

To participate, applications with payment must be postmarked by Friday, Sept. 24. Forms are available online. A $100 late fee must accompany applications received later than that.

But Sept. 30 is the absolute cutoff date since recent changes in Fort Worth’s outdoor events ordinance require organizers to notify the city of expected attendance by the end of this month.

The standard entry fee is $50 but groups that meet certain eco-friendly standards qualify for a discounted fee of $35. Those groups must be in a hybrid vehicle or be a walking group and not distribute any items.

TCGPWA is sharing the national “One Heart, One World, One Pride” theme that Dallas is also using this year. One of the awards that will be presented after the parade is for the entry with the “best interpretation of the national theme.”

Other awards will be given for best performance, a “brothers and sisters” award for the best out-of-town entry and “vivaciously vivid” for best costume.

Pride Week ends on Oct. 10 with the Pride Picnic. Traditionally, that is the largest LGBT community event in Fort Worth.

Wasson said TCGPWA plans a bigger main stage with entertainment continuing non-stop from noon to 6 p.m. He said he expects everything from church choirs to a stomp group to perform.

“We’re adding a new area this year,” Coronado said. “In addition to the health and wellness area and family-friendly area we’ll have an arts and cultural area.”
Applications are available on the website.

The picnic takes place at Trinity Park near the 7th Street Pavilion.

The following day is National Coming Out Day.

QCinema plans to screen “Beyond Gay: The Politics of Pride” at Four Day Weekend Theater on Oct. 4. Other Pride Week events are scheduled at Fort Worth’s bars.

For more information, visit TCGPWA.org

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition September 17, 2010.

—  Michael Stephens