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First Amendment

Aug 18, 2023

Prosecutor: Evidence insufficient to raid newspaper

MARION, Kansas — A police raid that drew national attention to a small Kansas newspaper over threats to press freedoms wasn’t supported by evidence, a prosecutor said Wednesday, as the paper’s staff scrambled to print its first weekly edition since their cellphones and computers were seized. Forced to rewrite stories and reproduce ads from scratch, […]

Jul 13, 2023

First Amendment group sues Texas Governor and others over the state’s TikTok ban on official devices

NEW YORK (AP) — A First Amendment group sued Texas Governor Greg Abbott and others on Thursday over the state’s TikTok ban on official devices, arguing the prohibition – which extends to public universities – is unconstitutional and impedes academic freedom. The complaint was filed by The Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, a […]

Jun 20, 2023

A Utah city violated the First Amendment in denying a drag show permit, judge rules

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The city of St. George must issue a permit for a Utah-based group that organizes drag performances to host an all-ages drag show in a public park, a federal judge ruled, calling the city’s attempt to stop the show unconstitutional discrimination. “Public spaces are public spaces. Public spaces are not […]

May 15, 2023

Atlanta to pay journalist $105,000 to settle lawsuit over 2020 protest arrest

ATLANTA (AP) — A freelance photojournalist who was arrested while taking photos during a racial justice demonstration in 2020 has reached a $105,000 settlement with the city of Atlanta, his lawyers said. Sharif Hassan had filed a federal lawsuit claiming his constitutional rights were violated, including his First Amendment right to freedom of speech. His […]

Apr 21, 2023

Widow sues Oklahoma sheriff who discussed killing reporters

IDABEL, Okla. (AP) — The widow of an Oklahoma man who died following a 2022 arrest filed a lawsuit Thursday against the rural sheriff who a newspaper says it caught on tape talking about killing journalists who were reporting on her husband’s death. Last March, outside the rural area of McCurtain County, Bobby Barrick’s death […]

Apr 12, 2022

Student’s First Amendment claim reinstated on appeal

BY JASON BOLEMAN  A former Virginia high school student’s First Amendment claim against a county’s school board has been reinstated after the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals found the former student’s complaint “plausibly alleges a First Amendment claim.”  The case stems from a conversation amongst classmates on Feb. 15, 2018, one day after the […]

Oct 25, 2017

Constitutional – First Amendment – Establishment Clause – War Memorial – 40-Foot Cross

American Humanist Association v. Maryland-National Capital Park & Planning Commission (Lawyers Weekly No. 001-188-17, 48 pp.) (Stephanie Thacker, J.) (Roger Gregory, C.J., concurring in part & dissenting in part) No. 15-2597; Oct. 18, 2017; U.S.D.C. at Greenbelt, Md. 4th Cir. Holding: A 40-foot tall Latin cross that is maintained with state funds at a busy […]

Jan 20, 2016

Free speech fiasco?

Journalists in South Carolina may soon have to report themselves to the government before they can report on anything else in the state. At least, that’s the goal of a bill put forward Jan. 19 in the state House of Representatives by Rep. Michael A. Pitts, R-Laurens. Under Pitts’ legislation, dubbed the South Carolina Responsible […]

Jun 24, 2015

Civil Rights — Police Corruption Report Was ‘Citizen’ Speech

Hunter v. Town of Mocksville, NC (Lawyers Weekly No. 001-104-15, 38 pp.) (Wynn, J.) No. 14-1081, June 15, 2015; USDC at Greensboro, N.C. (Eagles, J.) 4th Cir. Holding: Town police officers in North Carolina, who used a disposable cellphone to report alleged corruption by the police chief and town manager to the State Bureau of […]

Feb 20, 2015

US judge strikes down Charlottesville panhandling ordinance

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — The city of Charlottesville has been ordered to halt the enforcement of an ordinance that prohibits panhandling on parts of the city’s Downtown Mall. The Daily Progress ( reports a federal judge Thursday ruled the ordinance violates the First Amendment’s free speech protections. An attorney for a group of homeless people […]

Jan 7, 2015

Civil Rights — N.C. Abortion Law Violates First Amendment

Stuart v. Camnitz (Lawyers Weekly No. 001-001-15, 37 pp.) (Wilkinson, J.) No. 14-1150, Dec. 22, 2014; USDC at Greensboro, N.C. (Eagles, J.) 4th Cir. Holding: The 4th Circuit upholds a district court decision striking a North Carolina law requiring physicians to display a sonogram and communicate specific information about fetal development to women seeking abortions, […]

Nov 25, 2014

Constitutional — First Amendment – Labor & Employment – Public Employees – Elections

Lawson v. Gault (Lawyers Weekly No. 002-232-14, 11 pp.) (Timothy Cain, J.) 7:13-cv-01050; D.S.C. Holding: As deputy clerk of court and supervisor within the family court division of the clerk’s office, plaintiff held a position of confidence and authority as the direct representative of the clerk. Accordingly, she did not have a First Amendment right […]

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