ACLU speaks out about possible lawsuit against city

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – The ACLU of New Mexico is speaking out Tuesday about a possible lawsuit against the city, after APD protestors were removed from Thursday’s city council meeting.

Security moved in and escorted some protesters out of council chambers because they took the podium, but refused to say anything during the public comment period.

Some of the protesters were cited and banned from city hall for 90 days.

Councilors made temporary changes to the council meeting rules after protesters took over the city council meeting last Monday.

Those changes included increased security.

The ACLU is representing four of the protesters, and they might sue, saying new rules during council limit free speech.

“That’s really at the heart of what we’re trying to do here is ensure that these folks have the opportunity to express their opinions to communicate with their elected representatives without threat of censorship and certainly not with threat of some sort of criminal sanctions,” Peter Simonson with the ACLU said.

The ACLU says there is no timetable right now in filing a lawsuit.

Tuesday Council President Ken Sanchez released a statement saying anyone who was cited can attend future city hall and council meetings and quote “individuals wish to stand in silence for two minutes they will be permitted.”

The ACLU says despite this they still have first amendment concerns and may still sue.

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