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View Full Version : Jury Awards Grieving Father $2.9 Million Against Phelps's


Volcana
Nov 1st, 2007, 03:20 AM
http://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/2007/10/kansas_church_liable_in_marine.php

Albert Snyder of York, Pa., sued the Westboro Baptist Church for unspecified damages after members demonstrated at the March 2006 funeral of his son, Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder, who was killed in Iraq.
U.S. District Judge Richard Bennett noted the size of the award for compensating damages "far exceeds the net worth of the defendants," according to financial statements filed with the court. The jury was to deliberate later on punitive damages.
Church members routinely picket funerals of military personnel killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, carrying signs such as "Thank God for dead soldiers" and "God hates fags."
A number of states have passed laws regarding funeral protests, and Congress has passed a law prohibiting such protests at federal cemeteries. But the Maryland lawsuit is believed to be the first filed by the family of a fallen serviceman.
The church and three of its leaders the Rev. Fred Phelps and his two daughters, Shirley Phelps-Roper and Rebecca Phelps-Davis, 46 were found liable for invasion of privacy and intent to inflict emotional distress.
Snyder claimed the protests intruded upon what should have been a private ceremony and sullied his memory of the event.
The church members testified they are following their religious beliefs by spreading the message that the deaths of soldiers are due to the nation's tolerance of homosexuality.
Their attorneys argued in closing statements Tuesday that the burial was a public event and that even abhorrent points of view are protected by the First Amendment, which guarantees freedom of speech and religion.
The judge said the church's financial statements, sealed earlier, could be released to the plaintiffs.
Earlier, church members staged a demonstration outside the federal courthouse. Church founder Fred Phelps held a sign reading "God is your enemy," while Shirley Phelps-Roper stood on an American flag and carried a sign that read "God hates fag enablers." Members of the group sang "God Hates America" to the tune of "God Bless America."
Snyder sobbed when he heard the verdict, while members of the church greeted the news with tightlipped smiles.

Albert Snyder of York, Pa., sued the Westboro Baptist Church for unspecified damages after members demonstrated at the March 2006 funeral of his son, Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder, who was killed in Iraq.
U.S. District Judge Richard Bennett noted the size of the award for compensating damages "far exceeds the net worth of the defendants," according to financial statements filed with the court. The jury was to deliberate later on punitive damages.
Church members routinely picket funerals of military personnel killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, carrying signs such as "Thank God for dead soldiers" and "God hates fags."
A number of states have passed laws regarding funeral protests, and Congress has passed a law prohibiting such protests at federal cemeteries. But the Maryland lawsuit is believed to be the first filed by the family of a fallen serviceman.
The church and three of its leaders the Rev. Fred Phelps and his two daughters, Shirley Phelps-Roper and Rebecca Phelps-Davis, 46 were found liable for invasion of privacy and intent to inflict emotional distress.
Snyder claimed the protests intruded upon what should have been a private ceremony and sullied his memory of the event.
The church members testified they are following their religious beliefs by spreading the message that the deaths of soldiers are due to the nation's tolerance of homosexuality.
Their attorneys argued in closing statements Tuesday that the burial was a public event and that even abhorrent points of view are protected by the First Amendment, which guarantees freedom of speech and religion.
The judge said the church's financial statements, sealed earlier, could be released to the plaintiffs.
Earlier, church members staged a demonstration outside the federal courthouse. Church founder Fred Phelps held a sign reading "God is your enemy," while Shirley Phelps-Roper stood on an American flag and carried a sign that read "God hates fag enablers." Members of the group sang "God Hates America" to the tune of "God Bless America."
Snyder sobbed when he heard the verdict, while members of the church greeted the news with tightlipped smiles.

Randy H
Nov 1st, 2007, 04:39 AM
Karma can be a real expensive bitch :banana:

Looks like god hates bigots, Phelps family. Now start counting those pennies :devil:

Good to know laws are being passed to help prevent these incidents from happening legally, sickens me to know there are humans out there with their disturbing opinions.

Whitehead's Boy
Nov 1st, 2007, 04:52 AM
I'm all for freedom of speech, if the Westboro Baptist Church wants to make websites, publish books, etc, I don't care, however funeral protests is not appropriate and should be against the law.

mckyle.
Nov 1st, 2007, 04:55 AM
Religion :sobbing:

Scary motherfuckers :hug:

BigB08822
Nov 1st, 2007, 06:17 AM
I just read an article that said 11 million. Either way, HELL YEAH!!!!!

NeeemZ
Nov 1st, 2007, 06:27 AM
I go to a baptist church, but I don't know anyone who agrees with these Phelps' beliefs.

Veritas
Nov 1st, 2007, 01:32 PM
Too bad most of that $2.9 million will probably be lost to legal fees and taxes :tape:

NeeemZ
Nov 1st, 2007, 02:27 PM
CNN has the damages reported at $11MIL

samsung101
Nov 1st, 2007, 04:17 PM
Fred Phelps is not a Christian, he's just sick.
He has sued numerous Christian groups and figures and churches
for years, who have tried to take him on.

Many of his adult children are lawyers, or are married to lawyers.
They know how to get around things.

So, I'm thrilled he was found liable.
Finally, someone had enough to take him on, and win in a court of law.
Good.
Phelps should be in court every single day for the rest of his life
being sued by families, children, spouses, other churches, who have
been targets of his abuse.

The family may never get a dime, but, this is on Phelps now.
Like O.J., he'll spend years trying to hide funds or move things
around to avoid paying anything.

Of course, he'll try to get this to the Supreme Court as a freedom of
religion issue.

But, unnecessary and unwanted protest and speech is not always protected.
The family in question are private figures, not public figures. They're
held to a different standard than a well known person trying to sue.


His 'church' is comprised primarily of his own family, numerous kids, their
kids, and other relatives. He has a 'compound', fenced off, and his church is
mainly funded by online sources from overnight radio freaks who donate from their
bunkers.

He's really a very shady character. I wouldn't be surprised if he goes David Koresh
one of these days.