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Man sues after Wisc. police come to his home, arrest him for calling them racists on Facebook

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A federal lawsuit filed by a Wisconsin man alleges that Arena police violated his civil rights by charging him for calling officers racists on Facebook.

In 2012, Thomas G. Smith had seen an Arena Police Department Facebook post thanking community members for helping to detain two black children. Smith responded with a profanity-laced message about how Arena officers were racists.

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A federal lawsuit obtained by the StarTribune said that Officer Nicholas Stroik had deleted Smith’s comments, and the comments of others who accused police of targeting suspects based on race.

Smith then received a call from officers, who wanted to know if he had posted the comment. Smith replied that he had posted the Facebook message, and that he had meant it.

That night, officers arrested him at his home in Arena. He was charged with disorderly conduct and unlawful use of computerized communications.

Prosecutors asserted that his words had not been protect by the First Amendment of the Constitution because they could incite violence. Smith was convicted, and sentenced to probation with community service.

But in July, a state appellate judge overturned the case on the grounds that the Supreme Court’s so-called “fighting words doctrine” only applied when the speaker was in close proximity to the listener. The judge ruled that Smith’s Facebook messages should have been protected under the First Amendment.

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Smith’s lawsuit alleges that the officers retaliated against him. He is seeking legal fees and unspecified damages. The lawsuit noted that his arrest could have the effect of chilling free speech, and that the department only chose to delete Facebook messages that were critical of officers.


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India removing monkeys ahead of Trump’s visit: ‘They come in search of food’

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US President Donald Trump makes his first official visit to India on Monday and work has been going on around the clock to spruce things up -- to the annoyance of some locals as well as monkeys.

The photo opportunity highlights of the 36-hour trip include a rally of 100,000 people at the world's largest cricket stadium and watching the sunset with First Lady Melania at the Taj Mahal.

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Sardar Sarania, a resident of the slum, is disgusted at what he sees as Prime Minister Narendra Modi's attempt to conceal reality.

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Here is why Gov Roy Cooper is offering ‘honorary’ citizenship for a Canadian Zamboni driver

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North Carolina's Democratic governor offered honorary citizenship for a Canadian on Saturday evening in a heartwarming display of sportsmanship.

Gov. Roy Cooper made the offer after a unique situation arose.

The Toronto Maple Leafs were scheduled to play Carolina Hurricanes in hockey, but both of the Marlies' goalies were out with injuries.

So 42-year-old Zamboni drive David Ayres suited up, becoming the second-oldest player to ever make their NHL debut.

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Fatal crash of flat-earther’s steam-powered rocket caught on video: report

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An effort to prove the earth flat reportedly failed on Saturday.

"A man died in what authorities described as a rocket crash in the desert in Barstow on Saturday afternoon," KTLA-TV reported Saturday.

"Authorities did not identity the pilot pending positive identification by coroner's officials. Witnesses and news reports indicted the launch was an event hosted by local daredevil ''Mad Mike Hughes, an amateur rocket builder intent on proving that the Earth is flat," KTLA reported.

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