The head of a conservative legal defense organization hopes a lawsuit will stop the Oregon city from infringing on an evangelist's religious rights.
"Mark Mayberry was arrested and had criminal charges brought against him after he refused to leave a park where he was passing out gospel tracts," reports attorney Brad Dacus of Pacific Justice Institute, the law firm representing Mayberry. "We were successful in getting the charges dropped, but we've now filed a lawsuit against the city because law enforcement was violating an actual court injunction against them because, in the past, they've been trying to prevent people from sharing their faith."
Dacus hopes the lawsuit sends a message.
"They do not have the authority to silence Christians because their message causes some people to possibly be uncomfortable," the attorney explains. "The city clearly has not learned its lesson, and therefore, it's going to pay a very steep price, and that's the point of this lawsuit."
OneNewsNow is seeking comment from Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler, the Portland City Attorney, and the Portland Police Department.
"The City of Portland has a reputation for infringing on the rights of Christians wishing to evangelize and share their faith in public places," Dacus continues. "We're hoping through this lawsuit to once and for all bring that to a heart so that religious freedom can flourish in Portland, Oregon like it does in other places across the country."