Police chief threatens internet community over criticism
Court/Assoc.: Western District - Pennsylvania
Attorneys/Firms: Ronald Barber (Strassburger, McKenna, Gutnick & Potter); Vic Walczak (ACLU-PA)
In April 2004, the ACLU-PA obtained a federal court order on behalf of Internet-community-bulletin-board hosts to block a police chief from threatening to arrest people who posted messages on the site criticizing him, and from using illegal subpoenas to try to uncover his critics’ identities. On January 24th, 2006, the ACLU announced it had reached a settlement with the Washington County municipality and its suspended Chief of Police that would ensure the freedom of residents to debate political issues on a local website without fear of retaliation from local authorities.