[Lifesite News] SPOKANE, Washington, December 16, 2019 (LifeSiteNews) – A judge has dismissed charges against a Christian pastor in Washington who was arrested after trying to enter a public library in which a Drag Queen Story Hour event was taking place, though local prosecutors plan to try again against Afshin Yaghtin.
Yaghtin, who preaches at Spokane’s New Covenant Church, attempted to enter South Hill Public Library on June 15 to pray for the children attending a Drag Queen Story Hour event that day. 500 Mom Strong founder Anna Bohach witnessed police intercept and arrest him.
The Washington Times reported that Yaghtin was specifically arrested for refusing to move to a designated protest zone, which he objected was farther away from the library than where pro-LGBT protesters were allowed to gather.
“He did not carry signs or preach, and he did not consider himself a protestor,” said the Pacific Justice Institute, which defended the pastor. “The police nevertheless ordered Yaghtin to leave the premises — otherwise open to the public — and go across the street with everyone else who the police deemed not to be supportive of the event. Yaghtin asserted his First Amendment rights and the police responded by arresting him.”
Spokane Municipal Court Judge Tracy Staab dismissed the charges against Yaghtin on December 2, noting that the “scope of the protest zones was expanded to include anyone attending the event who had an opinion about the event, regardless of whether they were protesting or creating a disturbance,” and that “because the arrest for obstructing cannot be separated from Mr. Yaghtin’s speech, the evidence is insufficient as a matter of law to support the charge of obstructing.”
To continue reading, click here
A CALL TO ACTION
Bringing you discernment news and commentary from a biblical, polemical perspective means it is tough out there on social media. We’re constantly getting kneecapped and constrained by tech companies who find our fidelity to the scripture and pursuit of truth to be intolerable, resulting in our reach being severely throttled.
For this reason, we ask you please consider supporting us a few different ways. The first, by liking and following our new Facebook page, our home where we share new posts and interact with our members. The second, by following and retweeting our Twitter page. The third, by signing up for our newsletter below.
And last, through direct support. You can catch our free weekly episodes of the Polemics Report by subscribing at BTWN. If you like what you hear and desire to hear more, you can get the VIP full-length version for only $5.95 per month on Patreon. Also, you get other freebies for additional monthly pledges.
Subscribe to us on Patreon here and support our ministry.
Stay informed. Subscribe Today.
When you subscribe, please add firstname.lastname@example.org to your contacts to ensure that your newsletter doesn’t go into your spam folder.
Enter your email address below…