After recent protests against the killings of George Floyd and other Black Americans by police, some demonstrators in Texas say they were wrongly arrested for violating Texas’ anti-riot statute while protesting peacefully.
Three of those protestors – Liliana Godinez, Yolanda McGriff and Megan Nordyke, all from Dallas – have filed a lawsuit in a Dallas federal court, claiming law enforcement officers used the statute to unfairly snare lawful protestors.
Miles Moffeit coreported a story about the lawsuit with his Dallas Morning News colleague Dianne Solis. He told Texas standard host David Brown on Thursday that Texas is not the only state with anti-riot statutes, and some of those statutes have been challenged recently.
“These cases illustrate almost an expectation, an attitude, that [law enforcement] are expecting a riot, when, in effect, these people are merely expressing opinions that the police don’t like,” Moffeit said.
What you’ll hear in this segment:
– How the Dallas plaintiffs claim they were falsely arrested, and have witnesses to their peaceful protests
– How anti-riot laws mean peaceful protesters can be deemed guilty by association with those acting violently
– How a California judge found that state’s anti-riot law “overly broad” after white supremacists challenged it in court
Web story by Caroline Covington.