ShareThis Page
News

Abortion protester challenges Pittsburgh citation

| Wednesday, Aug. 4, 2010, 12:00 p.m.

An abortion protester claims in a federal lawsuit that Pittsburgh police violated his constitutional rights on Jan. 24 when Officer Bryan Sellers cited him for defiant trespass for walking in front of a Downtown abortion clinic.

Keith Tucci says in the lawsuit filed Tuesday that he wasn't carrying a sign or otherwise demonstrating on the public sidewalk on Liberty Avenue. He was issued the citation because he's a "known protestor," the lawsuit says.

Tucci's lawyer, Larry Paladin, said the city ordinance creating a 15-foot buffer zone around abortion clinics' entrances bans protests and demonstrations, but not walking.

"You're allowed to walk on the sidewalk," he said.

The zone is also supposed to apply to anyone, not just those opposed to abortions, but police have only cited abortion protesters for entering the 15-foot-radius, he said

The lawsuit seeks compensatory and punitive damages as well as an injunction to bar police from citing people for walking in front of the clinics.

A spokeswoman for the city couldn't be reached.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.

click me