The Oregonian / Everton Bailey Jr.

Investigators: Bakery Violated Gay Couple's Civil Rights

Labor investigators in Oregon say a cake company violated a lesbian couple's civil rights after refusing to make them a wedding cake in 2013.

By Collin Ruane | January 18, 2014

State labor investigators in Oregon say a cake company near Portland violated a lesbian couple's civil rights after refusing to make them a wedding cake.

KATU reports the couple went in to 'Sweet Cakes By Melissa' in Gresham last January to get a cake for their wedding when one of the co-owners told them he couldn't make one for them.

KPTV notes the company chose not to make them a cake because of the owner's religious beliefs, but a state law passed in 2007 says no one can be denied service because of their sexual orientation.

Although the married owners say they were just exercising their right to freedom of religion, a local law professor told KOIN those beliefs can't be exercised if they violate state law.

"If you're going to run a commercial business, you have an obligation to follow the rules that apply to everyone, regardless of whether your religious views differ."

The same-sex couple's attorney said his clients have found the ruling bittersweet. As for the owners, The Oregonian reports their attorney believes the ruling is unfair because gay marriage isn't legal in the state of Oregon.

"They’re being punished by the state of Oregon for refusing to participate in an event that the state of Oregon does not recognize."

After learning about the ruling, Melissa, who the business is named after wrote on Facebook saying: "God is great, amazing and all powerful. I know He has a plan."

KGW-TV reports the owners have to decide if they'll take the case to court or settle with the couple. A local legal expert said the odds wouldn't be on the owners' side if they went to court.

  TRENDING IN U.S. NEWS
Rescue workers search the waters off of the Los Angeles coast for three missing people.WATCHLIST
KGTV

2 Small Planes Collide Off LA Coast, 3 People Missing

Various types of fentanyl patches are pictured.WATCHLIST
Alcibiades

Fentanyl Abuse, Overdoses On The Rise In New Hampshire

The $18,000 gold bar is pictured next to a paper clip for scale.WATCHLIST
Bavarian Police

Lucky Teenager Gets To Keep $18,000 Bar Of Gold She Found

New York City Fire Department officials at the scene of the crane collapse in lower Manhattan.WATCHLIST
New York City Fire Department

Officials Investigating What Caused A NYC Crane To Collapse, Killing 1

Customers wait outside of a Denny's.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Justin Sullivan

Denny's Settles Los Angeles Racial Discrimination Lawsuit

Image of Johnny Cash and the tarantula species named after him.WATCHLIST
Joel Baldwin / Chris Hamilton et al.

There's A Tarantula Species Named After Johnny Cash

A crane collapsed in the Tribeca neighborhood of lower Manhattan.WATCHLIST
Twitter / @FDNY / @nycoem

At Least 1 Killed, Multiple Injured In New York City Crane Collapse

Photo from the U.S. Marshals Service wanted poster of Blake Fitzgerald and Brittany Nicole Harper.WATCHLIST
U.S. Marshals Service

1 Dead, 1 Injured After Wanted Couple Engages In Shootout With Police

Michael MooreWATCHLIST
Nicolas Genin / CC BY SA 2.0

Filmmaker Michael Moore Says He's In The ICU For Pneumonia

President Obama at the National Prayer Breakfast.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Shawn Thew

President Obama's New Long Shot: A $10 Tax On Oil

Adnan Syed's photoWATCHLIST
WMAR

'Serial' Subject Adnan Syed Has A 'Last-Ditch' Shot At A New Trial

A scientist examines mosquitos.WATCHLIST
WFTX

Gulf Coast States React To Growing Cases Of Zika Virus

A picture of a baby's swollen toe.WATCHLIST
Facebook / Scott Walker

A Dad's Warning On Facebook About Baby's Toe Goes Viral

Abby Wambach With BarbieWATCHLIST
Getty Images / Christian Petersen / Makers

The Latest Barbie Is Modeled After An Olympic Athlete Who's A Lesbian

Maurice White during a post-Grammy party in 2005.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Frederick M. Brown

Earth, Wind & Fire Co-Founder Maurice White Has Died

Martin Shkreli, former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals LLC., smiles while flanked by Nancy Retzlaff, chief commercial officer for Turing Pharmaceuticals LLC., during a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on Capitol Hill, February 4, 2016 in Washington, DC. Shkreli invoked his 5th Amendment right not to testify to the committee that is examining the prescription drug market. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Mark Wilson

'Pharma Bro' Martin Shkreli Didn't Say Much At Congressional Hearing

An illuminated sign is seen outside the University of Central Florida's Progress Energy welcome center.WATCHLIST
keone / CC BY SA 2.0

63K Social Security Numbers Stolen In University Hack In Florida

Deray Mckesson attends the LinkedIn Next Wave Event at The Empire State Building in September 2015.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Joe Kohen

What Are Black Lives Matter Activist DeRay's Chances Of Being Mayor?

Tony Romo #9 of the Dallas Cowboys is led to the sidelines by team officials after being sacked by the Carolina Panthers in the third quarter at AT&T Stadium on November 26, 2015 in Arlington, Texas.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Ronald Martinez

Quarterbacks May Not Be The Hottest Football Players After All

Sign in Okay, Oklahoma.WATCHLIST
KJRH

This Oklahoma School District Allows Employees To Carry Guns

Photo of Tony Burch witnessing the birth of his children on FaceTime.WATCHLIST
AMITA Health Adventist Medical Center, Hinsdale

Army Dad Overseas Watches Quadruplets Born On FaceTime

Roosh VWATCHLIST
Bartek Kucharczyk

Daryush 'Roosh' Valizadeh Cancels Neomasculinity Meetups Over Safety

The City of Flint Water Plant is illuminated by moonlight on January 23, 2016 in Flint, Michigan.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Brett Carlsen

300 Plumbers Install Water Filters In Flint, Michigan, For Free

The cover features Instagram model Sarah McDaniel posing as if she's taking a Snapchat selfie.WATCHLIST
Playboy / Theo Warner

Playboy's First Non-Nude Edition: Snapchat And Instagram Models

Ammon Bundy at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Justin Sullivan

Ammon Bundy, Other Oregon Militia Members Indicted

A woman picks up a tax form.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Chris Hondros

IRS Computer Systems Suffering 'Hardware Failure' During Tax Season

Women walk their babies in the park.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Sean Gallup

Here's What People Are Saying About That New CDC Guideline

Bill Cosby performs at the Treasure Island Hotel & CasinoWATCHLIST
Getty Images / Ethan Miller

Bill Cosby's Motion To Dismiss Charges Against Him Is Denied

#TooLateObama spread on social media, criticizing the president's recent visit to a mosque in Baltimore.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Olivier Douliery

Some Say President Obama's Mosque Visit Comes 'Too Late'

Trucks sit outside of a Toyota dealership.WATCHLIST
Getty Images / Justin Sullivan

Toyota To Pay $21.9 Million To Settle Racial Discrimination Claims