The Latest: Jury: Ex-Sheriff Clarke did not violate speech
Jan. 23, 2018
MILWAUKEE (AP) — The Latest on a lawsuit alleging that the former sheriff in Milwaukee violated a man's free speech with taunting Facebook posts after detaining him (all times local):
A federal jury says the former sheriff in Milwaukee, David Clarke, did not violate a man's free speech with taunting Facebook posts after detaining him at an airport last year for shaking his head at the sheriff.
The civil lawsuit from Daniel Black argued he received hateful messages and was fearful after Clarke called him a "snowflake" online and said Black "wouldn't be around to whine" if Clarke really wanted to harass him. Clarke made the comment after Black complained to the county that the sheriff had deputies detain him.
Jurors on Monday night concluded Clarke's posts were not enough to chill Black's future speech.
Black says he shook his head at Clarke while boarding a flight last January from Dallas to Milwaukee because Clarke was wearing Cowboys gear when they were playing the Green Bay Packers in the playoffs.
A man who sued Milwaukee's former sheriff after he was detained for shaking his head at the sheriff says he felt he "had a target" on him because of the lawman's taunting Facebook posts.
Daniel Black's lawsuit stems from an encounter he had last January with then-Sheriff David Clarke on a flight from Dallas to Milwaukee. The suit says Black asked Clarke if he was the county sheriff, and when Clarke said yes, Black shook his head disapprovingly.
Black tearfully testified Monday he began receiving hateful messages after Clarke called him a "snowflake" online.
Black's federal lawsuit alleges Clarke retaliated because Black complained to his office about the plane incident. Black argues Clarke stifled his free speech and he feared he would be harmed.
Clarke is not at the trial. His attorneys say Black did TV interviews after the encounter and didn't appear scared.