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Gideons arrested for distributing Bibles on public sidewalk February 8, 2007

Posted by C.A.R.D in ADF, Alliance Defense Fund, Anthony Mirto, anti-Christian, Bible, Bibles, Card, Christian, Christians, Cindy Peryam, Discriminate, Discrimination, distributing Bibles, Ernest Simpson, Gideons, Gideons arrested, Gideons International, Janine Gedman, Jo DeCamp, Jon Ellsworth, Monroe County Sheriff, Rick Ramsay, Sheriff Rick Roth, Val Marinello.
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PLANTATION KEY, Fla. — Two members of Gideons International arrested for distributing Bibles on a public sidewalk will be represented by Alliance Defense Fund attorneys. Anthony Mirto and Ernest Simpson were arrested, booked into jail, and charged with trespassing.

“The First Amendment protects the right to engage in religious speech on a public sidewalk,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel David Cortman. “Members of the Gideons have been highly respected for decades as peaceful providers of free Bibles to those who want them.”

On Jan. 19, Mirto and Simpson began distributing copies of the Bible on a public sidewalk outside Key Largo School. Neither man entered school grounds. After the school’s principal called police, a Monroe County Sheriff’s officer asked the men to leave immediately or face trespassing charges. As the men prepared to leave, the officer decided to arrest both individuals.
A hearing will be held March 5 in the County Court in and for Monroe County, Florida, in State of Florida v. Simpson and State of Florida v. Mirto. ADF attorneys are preparing a motion to dismiss the charges.

“Officials cannot use fear of arrest as a means of bullying law-abiding Christians into silence,” Cortman said. “These men broke no laws when they decided to communicate their message on a public sidewalk.”
ADF is a legal alliance defending the right to hear and speak the Truth through strategy, training, funding, and litigation.

Take Action:

Contact information for  Monroe County Sheriff’s office:

Citizen Complaints

(305)292-7138

cperyam@keysso.net
jellsworth@keysso.net
jgedmin@keysso.net

jdecamp@keysso.net

CARD {Citizens Against Racism and Discrimination} Source: alliancedefensefund.org


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