The ACLU of Missouri filed a lawsuit against the city of Wentzville for violating a person’s freedom of speech. Sally Hunt was removed from a public board of aldermen meeting by order of the mayor after she raised concerns about a recently installed “In God We Trust” sign on the front of the City Council’s dais.

On February 14th, 2018, Sally Hunt appeared before the Mayor and Board of Aldermen of Wentzville during a public Open Forum section of their meeting. Hunt had been approved as a speaker by Mayor Nick Guccione, with her stated speaking topic listed as a discussion of the newly installed "In God We Trust" sign in Wentzville City Hall. Hunt raised concerns that the sign would alienate citizens of Wentzville who did not belive in God or were in favor of the separation of church and state. Hunt was allotted a five-minute speaking time, but was cut short and then told she was over her alotted time and asked to leave. Hunt was eventually removed from the building entirely by two law enforcement officers. 

The ACLU-MO's lawsuit engaged the city of Wentzville and Mayor Guccione, whose actions violated Hunt's first amendment rights to freedom of speech. The case was settled in November 2018.

 

Find the Legal Glossary here: https://www.aclu-mo.org/en/node/124

Attorney(s)

Anthony E. Rothert, Jessie Steffan, Gillian R. Wilcox

Date filed

April 12, 2018

Court

Missouri Eastern District Court, Eastern Division

Status

Closed

Stay informed

ACLU of Missouri is part of a network of affiliates

Learn more about ACLU National