Duluth City Council to Address Free Speech Lawsuit for Bentleyville in Special Session

By KBJR News 1

Duluth City Council to Address Free Speech Lawsuit for Bentleyville in Special Session

May 7, 2013 Updated May 7, 2013 at 10:22 AM CST

Duluth, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- The free speech lawsuit involving Duluth's holiday light show Bentleyville is back in the spot light as City Councilors plan a special meeting to discuss the litigation.

On Thursday, councilors will convene the Committee of the Whole in a closed session to discuss the status of a lawsuit brought by Steve Jankowski, an area minister and Peter Scott, a member of his congregation.

Back in December, a judge ruled in favor of the two preachers, saying Duluth violated an injunction issued in 2011 which allowed the preachers to share their views on public property, including on the grounds of Bentleyville.

The lawsuit alleged that Scott and a friend, Michael Winandy, were ordered by a police officer to cease their preaching at the light display. The officer said he had received a complaint from event managers that the preachers were disturbing visitors, however never asked them to leave.

Bentleyville leaders have had to set up a zone, just outside the gates, designated as a first amendment zone following the judge's order.

Posted to the web by Krista Burns

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