FAC Condemns Kern County for Violating Local Man’s First Amendment Rights

Read June 28, 2022, FAC Letter to Kern County Counsel Over Speech-Chilling Threat

The First Amendment Coalition today sent a letter to the Kern County Counsel’s Office condemning a legal threat the office made against a member of the public, Bakersfield resident Eddy Laine, after Laine exercised his right to complain to a state agency about handling of his public records requests. The letter explains why county counsel’s threat of legal liability under a state law called the False Claims Act is not only baseless but a First Amendment violation. FAC Legal Director David Loy calls on County Counsel Margo Raison to immediately withdraw the office’s speech-chilling threat, publicly apologize for interfering with First Amendment rights and to take appropriate action to ensure such a threat never recurs.

Update: The office of County Counsel issued a response denying it had made a threat. Read coverage in the Bakersfield Californian here and here.

Read the FAC letter.

Read coverage in the Bakersfield Californian.