Earlier this week, the leaders of the city of Vinita scaled back their mandates & restrictions on public mobility. This came after a sweeping constitutional challenge was filed by an Oklahoma attorney.
Today, Attorney Frank Urbanic announced a federal lawsuit against the city of Guthrie, filed in federal courts, in the western district of Oklahoma. Urbanic was previously instrumental in exposing an abuse of state emergency powers when he exposed Governor Stitt's declaration of civil unrest (a state of riot), to concentrate emergency powers to his office, rather than the state's health director. That revelation precipitated a new health emergency declaration and a proper set of statutory procedures.
Here's some of Urbanic's press statement, today.
URBANIC LAW FIRM CHALLENGING GUTHRIE’S UNCONSTITUTIONAL ORDINANCE
On April 23, 2020, The Urbanic Law Firm filed a federal lawsuit in the Western District of Oklahoma on behalf of ten plaintiffs whose constitutional rights are being violated by the City of Guthrie.
There are seven causes of action in this case:
- A violation of the Free Exercise Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
- A violation of the Freedom of Assembly Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
- A violation of the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution (x2)
- A violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
- A violation of the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution
- A violation of 11 O.S. § 14-101, the Oklahoma Constitution, and other Oklahoma laws
- It is legal to drive to the store to buy food for your dog, but it criminalizes driving to church to pray.
- It is illegal to stand six feet away from people at a church gathering, but it is legal to walk around in a grocery store, likely getting close than six feet from other people.
- It is legal to jog on a sidewalk, but it is illegal to stand on a sidewalk, six feet away from someone, and either pray or peacefully protest.
- It is illegal to drive in a car, by yourself, merely for a leisurely drive.
- The Ordinance makes it a crime to not wear a “cloth face covering”–that the City of Guthrie does not provide.
A huge debt of gratitude is owed to the ten brave PATRIOTS who decided to be a part of this lawsuit. I had dozens more contact me who wanted in. Unfortunately, I had to limit the participation when I was finalizing the documents. People have been saying, “I wish somebody would do something about that!”. Well, these plaintiffs did something about that. They should be commended for not accepting government oppression. A pandemic does not give a government a blank check to do whatever it wants. The Constitution must still be followed. The goals of the City can still be achieved during these trying times, but through far less intrusive means.
Special thanks goes to attorneys Josh Lee and Riley Mulinix. Josh blazed the trail here in Oklahoma by challenging Vinita’s ridiculous ordinance. Riley helped me considerably in the drafting and filing of the pleadings.
What we filed: