Tennessee to appeal Occupy Nashville free speech ruling

Tennessee to appeal Occupy Nashville free speech ruling

July 2nd, 2013 by Andy Sher in Local - Breaking News

Gov. Bill Haslam answers a question during a news conference in this file photo.

Photo by Associated Press/Times Free Press.

NASHVILLE - State attorneys today served notice they are challenging last month's ruling by a U.S. District Court judge in Nashville who found Gov. Bill Haslam's administration violated the free speech rights of Occupy Nashville protesters arrested during 2011 demonstrations on War Memorial Plaza.

In a filing with the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Tennessee Attorney General Robert Cooper's office said that they are contesting U.S. District Judge Aleta Trauger's June 12 ruling.

State Safety Commissioner Bill Gibbons and General Services Commissioner Steve Cates are listed on the appeal of the suit, filed against Haslam and top administration officials.

The state is contesting portions of Trauger's order denying defendants' defense of qualified immunity and the resulting findings on behalf of the plaintiffs on First Amendment, due process and Fourth Amendment violations.