New Judge in AIDS Bias Case

A new judge has been assigned to hear a criminal discrimination case brought by the city against a nail salon charged with refusing service to an AIDS patient.

Beverly Hills Municipal Court Commissioner John Murphy will preside in the case, which previously was administered by Judge Judith Stein. Stein recently removed herself from the case because she had a manicure at the salon.

The salon and its owner, Jessica Vartoughian, are charged with misdemeanor violations of West Hollywood's anti-discrimination law for declining to provide pedicure services to Paul Jasperson, who has been diagnosed as having acquired immune deficiency syndrome.

Jasperson also has sued the salon in Santa Monica Superior Court, demanding damages and the right to be given a pedicure.

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