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Author: Dave

Freedom Center’s Director of Litigation on Front Page of Time Magazine

Freedom Center’s Director of Litigation on Front Page of Time Magazine

A couple of months ago Dave Roland, the Freedom Center of Missouri’s director of litigation, was invited to take part in a special project by Time Magazine. French photographic artist JR would take pictures of a couple hundred people from all sides of the debate on firearms in America, then allow them – in their own words – to explain their perspective. The photographs would then be woven into an interactive mural. A still version of the mural would be…

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PRESS RELEASE: Court of Appeals Rules Task Force “Substantially Complied” with Sunshine Law, Despite Failure to Respond to Four Requests

PRESS RELEASE: Court of Appeals Rules Task Force “Substantially Complied” with Sunshine Law, Despite Failure to Respond to Four Requests

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  September 12, 2018 CONTACT:  Dave Roland Mexico, Missouri—In an unpublished opinion filed on September 11, 2018, in Malin v. MUSTANG, a panel of the Missouri Court of Appeals ruled that, although attorneys for the MUSTANG Task Force admitted that the Task Force had failed to offer any response to four separate requests for public records, the court would affirm a judgment stating that MUSTANG “complied or substantially complied” with the Sunshine Law. An unpublished opinion has no precedential…

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VICTORY: Circuit Judge Rules St. Louis City Officials Violated Sunshine Law

VICTORY: Circuit Judge Rules St. Louis City Officials Violated Sunshine Law

14779 Audrain Rd. 815            Mexico, Missouri            www.mofreedom.org              (573) 567-0307   FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:                                                     CONTACT:  Dave Roland July 19, 2018                                                                                                             (573) 567-0307   VICTORY: Circuit Judge Rules St. Louis City Officials Violated Sunshine Law   Mexico, Missouri—St. Louis City Circuit Judge Mark Neill ruled Wednesday afternoon in Malin v. Metro Multi-Jurisdictional Undercover Drug Program, et al., that St. Louis City officials committed multiple violations of Missouri’s open records laws when they failed to produce documents related to…

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A Long Time Coming

A Long Time Coming

In the fall of 2009, more than one year before Dave and Jenifer Roland founded the Freedom Center of Missouri, an African-style hair braider named Salimato Kouyate contacted Dave to ask for help.  The Missouri Board of Cosmetology and Barber Examiners had sued her, trying to put her out of business because she earned money by braiding hair and had not first completed the 1,500 hours’ worth of training that state law requires to act as a licensed cosmetologist.  That…

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Little Pink House

Little Pink House

A decade and a half ago a courageous woman, Susette Kelo, waged a desperate battle to save her neighborhood from a city’s effort to condemn the neighborhood’s homes and business and to hand those properties over to a private developer.  Susette’s little pink house became the focal point of one of the most important property rights battles in American history.  Now a new movie, Little Pink House, starring Catherine Keener and Jeanne Tripplehorn, dramatizes her story. Although the film has been…

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VICTORY: Court Rules Sheriff May Not Withhold Documents, But Shortchanges Victorious Attorneys

VICTORY: Court Rules Sheriff May Not Withhold Documents, But Shortchanges Victorious Attorneys

14779 Audrain Rd. 815            Mexico, Missouri            www.mofreedom.org              (573) 567-0307 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:                                                     CONTACT:  Dave Roland April 18, 2018                                                                                                            (573) 567-0307   VICTORY: Circuit Judge Rules Sheriff May Not Withhold Documents Related to Law Enforcement Officer’s Death, But Shortchanges Victorious Attorneys   Mexico, Missouri—Early in 2007 a mid-Missouri narcotics officer named Melissa Winnie alleged misconduct on the part of several of her co-workers.  Less than a year later, she was dead. For more than a decade…

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BLOOMING RIDICULOUS: Federal Judge Rules Property Rights Not “Fundamental,” Okays Twenty-Year Prison Sentences for Growing Harmless Flowers

BLOOMING RIDICULOUS: Federal Judge Rules Property Rights Not “Fundamental,” Okays Twenty-Year Prison Sentences for Growing Harmless Flowers

14779 Audrain Rd. 815            Mexico, Missouri            www.mofreedom.org              (573) 567-0307 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:                                                     CONTACT:  Dave Roland March 29, 2018                                                                                                      (573) 567-0307   BLOOMING RIDICULOUS: Federal Judge Says City May Force Senior Citizens to Grow Plants That Make Them Sick, Twenty Years in Prison for Noncompliance Not “Excessive”   Mexico, Missouri—Late yesterday afternoon U.S. District Judge John Ross ruled that even though the U.S. Constitution says that it protects citizens’ property rights, cities can force homeowners to devote…

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Public Officials, Social Media, Transparency, and the First Amendment

Public Officials, Social Media, Transparency, and the First Amendment

The past few decades have seen the development of technologies that raise challenging new questions about citizens’ rights under open records laws, open meetings laws, and the First Amendment.  Several current situations in Missouri may require courts to answer some of these questions. One question has to do with public officials’ use of social media to interact with the public.  Ordinarily, if a public official is hosting an event in a public setting, they cannot selectively exclude citizens from attending. …

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Sometimes Victory Means Avoiding Litigation

Sometimes Victory Means Avoiding Litigation

The Freedom Center’s primary goal is to help shape our legal landscape by winning victories in the courtroom.  But sometimes we can score victories without ever needing to file a lawsuit.  We have a brand-new story to share about just such a victory. A few weeks ago Jerry Dollar, a resident of St. Louis County, let us know that the St. Louis County Police Department was refusing to return a handful of lawfully-obtained, lawfully-owned firearms that it had confiscated from…

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Briefing Completed in Cutting Edge First Amendment Case

Briefing Completed in Cutting Edge First Amendment Case

On December 21, 2017, the Freedom Center of Missouri and our co-counsel at the Institute for Free Speech filed our final brief on behalf of Ron Calzone in our Citizen Activist Speech case.  The Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals is expected to hear oral arguments in this case early next year – we will post an announcement when the court sets the date for those arguments. Last month we shared a video in which Ron explains the importance of this case,…

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