Archive for Thursday, August 5, 2010

Nebraska judge refuses to dismiss funeral protest charges against Phelps-Roper

August 5, 2010


— A member of Westboro Baptist Church is set to stand trial this month on charges of disturbing the peace and negligent child abuse stemming from a 2007 protest at a Nebraska soldier’s funeral.

Douglas County Judge Joseph Caniglia refused Wednesday to dismiss the case against Shirley Phelps-Roper, clearing the way for an Aug. 23 trial. Phelps-Roper has pleaded not guilty.

She had asked to have the case thrown out, saying the charges aren’t warranted because she was executing her right to free speech and was in compliance with a city-issued permit for the protest. Caniglia denied a similar motion in April.

Phelps-Roper is accused of letting her then-10-year-old son stand on an American flag at the funeral of a National Guardsman in Bellevue, near Omaha. Authorities say she also wore a flag as a skirt that dragged on the ground.

In a separate case in the same protest, Phelps-Roper was charged with violating Nebraska’s flag-mutilation law, which makes it illegal to intentionally cast “contempt or ridicule” upon an American or Nebraska flag by mutilating, defacing, defiling, burning or trampling it. She filed a federal lawsuit challenging the law’s constitutionality.

Last week, the city of Bellevue agreed to pay $17,000 to Phelps-Roper to be dismissed from her lawsuit. A federal judge, with agreement from state Attorney General Jon Bruning, also permanently stopped the flag-mutilation law from being enforced. They indicated it’s unconstitutional.


mom_of_three 7 years, 9 months ago

Makes you wonder if the woman has a real job, and how she is able to perform it if she is gone all the time.

Bobo Fleming 7 years, 9 months ago

All they want is publicity. They get crazier and crazier because they need to stay in the press. If people would ignore them they would just go away.

kernal 7 years, 9 months ago

They would just make themselves more visable. Bad enough Topekans have to see them marching their children around that town with those stupid hate mongering picket signs.

christy kennedy 7 years, 9 months ago

It's child abuse. And after reading about the actual abuse suffered by the Phelps children and poor Mrs. Phelps, I don't know why Fred hasn't been locked up or the kids were never taken away from them.

calwt262 7 years, 9 months ago

Sounds like a mom of the year award is in order. Of course she was wearing an American flag as a skirt, I can't imiagine her "church" would allow a woman to fashion an American flag into pants.

Stuart Evans 7 years, 9 months ago

how long until these westboro folks decide to start performing homosexual acts on one another to show the public just how wrong it is...

blindrabbit 7 years, 9 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

kernal 7 years, 9 months ago

Seriously doubt either of them think there's any reason why they would need Menningers or similar services.

friendlyjhawk 7 years, 9 months ago

Thank you Judge. A rational man in an irrational world.

Flap Doodle 7 years, 9 months ago

How many comments removed in one day equals getting disappeareded?

Fred Whitehead Jr. 7 years, 9 months ago

Why hasn't a Kansas judge or court filed charges of child abuse against these scum??

Why does it take a Nebraska judge to see clearly what these spawn of the devil throwbacks are about?

BruceWayne 7 years, 9 months ago

it is my understanding that HWCBN attends this church.

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