A pastor in Columbus, Mississippi was arrested and and put in jail for displaying a pro-life sign outside of an abortion clinic last year reports CBN News. The pastor is now filing a lawsuit against the city and police captain.
Pastor Stephen Joiner’s sign said, “Abortion kills children.”
According to Charisma News, authorities told the pastor to leave because he was obstructing traffic, though Joiner stood away from the road on the sidewalk. He was also cited with violating the city parade ordinance; however, the pastor was alone at the time.
When he refused to leave, Joiner was put in jail for four hours. The charges were later dropped.
The Liberty Counsel will be representing Joiner in the federal civil rights lawsuit, arguing that Columbus’ parade ordinance banning distribution of literary materials in public places is unconstitutional.
“The First Amendment protects the right of citizens to express themselves on the public ways free of government interference. The city’s actions were entirely unjustified and are an affront to the fundamental rights of all Americans,” Liberty Counsel founder and chairman Mat Staver said.
“Even unpopular speech is protected when peacefully expressed, as Pastor Joiner did here.”
Publication date: May 20, 2014