Judge Lifts Order That Banned Dan Valenti From Blogging About Newsworthy Accident
In Berkshire, Massachusetts, “a judge lifted a harassment prevention order against local blogger Dan Valenti that kept him from writing about Meredith Nilan and forced him to remove blog posts about her. Judge Mark Mason gave his decision on Monday after a daylong hearing in Central Berkshire District Court. On June 27, Judge Bethzaida Sanabria-Vega issued the harassment prevention order after Nilan filed a complaint.” Further details in the Berkshire Eagle.
I earlier explained why it was unconstitutional for Judge Sanabria-Vega to ban blogging as “harassment.” Her order was issued over Valenti’s criticism of Meredith Nilan, the daughter of a court official, who struck a pedestrian with her car (breaking his neck), and then drove off (prosecutors allowed her to avoid any jail time or fine). The judge ordered Valenti to stop blogging about Nilan, and remove his prior blog posts. That gag order was criticized by lawyers, a law professor, and me in a July 4 news story.
On May 29, a similar injunction was issued in Maryland in Kimberlin v. Walker, banning a conservative blogger from criticizing ex-terrorist Brett Kimberlin (the blogger was also briefly jailed), but that injunction was thrown out on appeal on July 5.