Welcome to pagan Rome where Christians are harassed and arrested for reading their bible in public! The pressure to shut up and go along is moving forward friends. Watch out of those home bible study groups or prayer circles in public! You might offend a heathen!
Late Tuesday, Superior Court Judge Timothy Freer found two men “not guilty” after they were charged and tried for reading the Bible aloud in front of a line of people waiting to enter the DMV in Hemet, California. One of them is Pastor Brett Coronado of Reconciled Christian Fellowship in Hemet, California and the other is an elder of the church.
he prosecution needed to prove that the men were required to obtain a permit before engaging in their expressive activity of reading the Bible. After the prosecution rested, the defense team made a motion for directed verdict and Judge Freer entered a verdict of “not guilty” before the defense was required to present its own witnesses and evidence.
Robert Tyler, one of the defense attorneys and General Counsel for Advocates for Faith & Freedom stated, “The prosecution failed to meet its burden of proof that our clients committed a crime when they read the Bible aloud in front of a line of people.”
Nic Cocis, defense attorney and co-counsel, remarked, “These men were exercising their First Amendment right of Free Speech. They were simply sharing their faith on public property and the criminal charges should never have been filed.”
In order for the prosecution to prove that a permit was required under Title 13, Section 1860 of the California Administrative Code, it was required to prove that the defendants were engaged in a “demonstration or gathering” as defined in Section 1851. Judge Freer ruled that there was insufficient evidence to prove that the men conducted either a “demonstration or gathering.” Both definitions require that the conduct of defendants was such that it had “the effect, intent or propensity to draw a crowd or onlookers” and the prosecution couldn’t prove that to be the case.