Last month, the Sixth Circuit reversed a district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of six Ohio police officers sued for unlawful arrest and retaliation against the free expression of protected speech.
In 2016, Michael Wood entered a county fair sporting an uncensored t-shirt that read “F**k the Police.” Within a few hours, six police officers and fairgrounds’ director Dean Blair had descended upon Wood asking to see the offending shirt. Although Wood had since covered up or changed out of the t-shirt, the officers heeded Blair’s demand that Wood be removed from the fair. Wood agreed to go, but not quietly; as he was escorted off of the fairgrounds, Wood leveled profane insults at Blair and the officers and cited violations of his First Amendment right to free speech. The officers then arrested Wood for disorderly conduct.