TULSA, Okla. — The ACLU is suing the state of Oklahoma over the state's riot law.
The statute defines riot as: "Any use of force or violence, or any threat to use force or violence if accompained by immediate power of execution, by three or more persons acting together and without authority of law, is riot." They claim the statute is unconstitutionally overbroad and vague. The suit alleges "sweeps far beyond the very limited and narrow true threats exception to the First Amendment right to freedom of speech, thereby subjecting non-violent protestors to criminal liability for exercising their constitutionally protected rights to speech and assembly."
Instead of listening to calls for accountability from the community, Oklahoma targeted the free speech rights of racial justice protesters. In a time of historic activism, that response is not just unconstitutional: It’s fundamentally un-American.
— ACLU of Oklahoma (@ACLUOK) June 24, 2022
The ACLU of Oklahoma Foundation, National Law Center for Economic Justice, and Herbert Smith Freehills filed one lawsuit on behalf of plaintiffs Sincere Terry, Mia Hogsett, Tyreke Baker, Preston Nabors, Trevour Webb, and Austin Mack against the City of Oklahoma City and Oklahoma County for their policies and practices of violating the constitutional rights of racial justice protesters.
The ACLU and Cornell Law School First Amendment Clinic filed this separate lawsuit on behalf of the same plaintiffs challenging the riot law.
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