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On Friday afternoon U.S. District Court Judge John Mendez issued a 24 page ruling denying the petitioners request to lift the ban from California Highway Patrol on protests at state buildings
Two California residents had applied for a restraining order against CHP’s ban on protest. The judge ruled in favor of CHP
“A 1905 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that found a community has the right to protect itself against an epidemic of disease which threatens the safety of its members. The Supreme Court penned those words over a hundred years ago, but they remain relevant today,”
– Judge Mendez
The two individuals who applied for the restraining order had requested permits for rallies at the state capitol which were expected to attract 500-1000 people. Both parties were denied their permits.
“In this case it is uncontroverted that the State’s stay at homeorder bears a real and substantial relation to public health,” the judge wrote. “Here in California, as of May 6, 2020, COVID-19 has infected 58,815 and killed 2,412.”
– Judge Mendez
Despite CHP refusing to issue permits, protest around the state capitol have continued. One last Friday ended with police in riot gear forcing protesters off of the state capitol grounds. Thirty two people were cited during the protest for creating a public health hazard.
A Thursday protest was met with hundreds of officers surrounding the state capitol ensuring protesters did not get near the building.
The judge ruled in favor of CHP because he found that the ban on protest was in alignment with the state’s stay at home order.
However the judge anticipates that the lawsuit may continue for awhile and could potentially end up before the U.S. Supreme Court.
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