Tuesday, June 07, 2016

County Settles Lawsuit By Removing Cross Decals From Sheriff's Cars

Austin American-Statesman reports that last week Brewster County, Texas commissioners approved a settlement in Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc. v. Brewster County, Texas, which had been filed in federal district court in March.  In the case, FFRF sued challenging 8-inch tall Latin cross decals placed by the sheriff on six county law enforcement vehicles. (See prior posting.)  Three weeks after the suit was filed, the county Commissioners Court approved a ban on all political, religious, commercial and personal symbols and messages on county vehicles. In the proposed consent decree (full text) embodying the settlement, the court will enjoin the county from displaying Latin cross decals on Sheriff's Office vehicles, order defendants to pay plaintiffs' attorneys' fees and cost totaling slightly over $22,000, and award nominal damages of $1 each to two individual plaintiffs in the lawsuit.