Can you be banned from a city?

December 20, 2018 - 3:30 am

By Amy E. Feldman, Judge Technology Solutions

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — An Atlanta woman had a beef with the police department of the adjacent town of Statham, where her partner had been — in her opinion — falsely arrested for disorderly conduct after cursing out a police officer. 

The charges against her partner, who has since passed away, were dropped, but the woman fought on. She attended every council meeting, disrupted council meetings for 18 months, and made hundreds of requests for documents. 

The town has now moved to ban her, not just from city council meetings but from setting foot on any city-owned property for the rest of her life. 

Sounds like a fun power to have. Do they have that authority? Is it legal?  

It can be, but it probably isn't here, where there's no allegation that the woman has committed any crime. Had she ever threatened any council members, it would be a different story. But in this case, her lawyers argue that they are trampling her free speech rights because they just don't want to hear what she has to say.  

At all. About anything. Ever again.  

The case is going to be heard later this month. For now, she holds press conferences across the street from the city limits until she's let back in to do it in person.