The U.S. Department of Justice says it had was right to arrest a man inside the Supreme Court for wearing an “Occupy Everything” jacket, and the man is lucky he was only charged with “unlawful entry.”
The man who was arrested for wearing an “Occupy Everything” jacket, Fitzgerald Scott, is seeking $1 million dollars in damages. The Feds aren’t budging though, saying they had every right to arrest Scott, a former Marine, because the Supreme Court is not an are protected by free speech.
Fitzgerald was not disturbing anyone while he was inside the Supreme Court, but was repeatedly told to remove his jacket or leave. Fitzgerald was later arrested and charged with “unlawful entry” as he was quietly viewing an exhibit on slavery.
Prosecutors later dismissed the charges, and that’s when Scott sued.
According to Wired, Fitzgerald may have an uphill battle:
To be sure, the courts have upheld convictions of those wearing inappropriate clothing inside the high court’s building — once in 2011 for individuals wearing orange shirts that said “Shut Down Guantanamo” and in 2007 for protesters wearing orange jump suits and black hoods — all in violation of the so-called “Display Clause.”
“It also bears noting that, while plaintiff was initially charged with violating the unlawful entry statute, his conduct also violated the Display Clause of section 6135, and he could just as easily have been charged with an independent violation of that statute as well,” the Obama administration said.
So according to the Obama administration, Scott should be happy he got off so easy.