JACKSONVILLE, NC (AP) — A federal judge is approving a settlement after anti-abortion protesters claimed a Jacksonville city ordinance violates free-speech rights by giving police too much leeway in deciding where and when demonstrations are allowed.
A court order filed Tuesday says Jacksonville has agreed to change its local public assembly ordinance, which required a police permit for protests that involve three or more people.
A group of anti-abortion protesters from nearby Craven County sued in November, claiming the ordinance violated their rights to free speech as they attempted to picket a Jacksonville women’s clinic.
The agreement approved by U.S. District Judge Terrence Boyle says the lawsuit will be dismissed 30 days after Jacksonville’s city council modifies the ordinance.
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