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Federal judge rules Black Lives Matter movement can't be sued

30 September 2017

Middle District of Louisiana Chief Judge Brian Jackson dismissed the suit against Mckesson and Black Lives Matter.

Last year, a police officer sued BLM leader DeRay Mckesson and four other defendants because he was hit by a rock during a protest in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on July 17, 2016.

Such was the topic of conversation on Friday morning's Fox and Friends, as a federal judge dismissed the officer's suit this week on grounds that "Black Lives Matter itself is not an entity of any sort" and therefore cannot be held liable.

Brian Jackson, a USA district judge, dismissed the officer's suit and ruled that Black Lives Matter was not an entity capable of being sued.

"The Court also notes that Plaintiff's attempt to bring suit against a social movement and a hashtag evinces either a gross lack of understanding of the concept of capacity or bad faith", Jackson wrote. The protest came in response to the police-involved shooting of Alton Sterling, who was Black, by a white police officer.

Charges were also dismissed against Mr McKesson who was expressing his right to free speech at the July 2016 rally, and played no involvement in the injury.

The officer's attorney, Donna Grodner, did not immediately respond to a call and email seeking comment.

Mckesson was one of almost 200 protesters arrested after Sterling's shooting death.

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At the protest in question, Mckesson was present and arrested, but not charged, along with almost 200 other protestors, but is not accused of throwing the rock that struck the officer.

The officer whose lawsuit was dismissed is identified only as "Officer John Doe" in the suit, saying the anonymity is "for his protection". He has long described Black Lives Matter as a call to end violence.

Grodner had argued Black Lives Matter is an "unincorporated association" that can be held liable for her client's injuries.

Mckesson and approximately 90 others who were arrested sued the city, claiming the police were "militarized and aggressive", and the group received total settlement of $100,000 in the lawsuit. "They solicit money. They have national chapters", the lawyer told the Associated Press.

Giving the reason, the judge said that as it a social movement, it can not be held responsible for the injuries he got at a protest.

The suit accuses Black Lives Matters and five of its leaders (Mckesson being one of them) of inciting violence that led to the deadly attack. It's not possible, a federal judge just ruled, saying the group can not be sued because no such "entity" exists.

A supporter of the United Kingdom branch of "Black Lives Matter" hands out placards at the start of a demonstration in London, Britain August 5, 2016.

Federal judge rules Black Lives Matter movement can't be sued