Springfield panhandling ordinance in limbo after injunction

1 year 1 month 2 weeks ago January 09, 2016 Jan 9, 2016 Saturday, January 09 2016 Saturday, January 09, 2016 2:26:00 PM CST in News
By: The Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Springfield officials are wondering if a 2014 ordinance prohibiting aggressive panhandling can be salvaged after a preliminary injunction issued last month has prevented law enforcement officers from enforcing any panhandling restrictions.

Springfield's municipal prosecutor says the city has dismissed any pending panhandling cases and declined to file new ones since the Dec. 16 injunction was put into place.

The Springfield News-Leader reports 61-year-old Bobby Honicutt filed a federal lawsuit on Dec. 3 alleging that the city's law has not been applied correctly. He says he tried to panhandle passively but was threatened with a ticket by a police officer.

The ACLU says the ordinance is a blatant violation of free-speech rights.

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