UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
FOR THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA
MARY HUDDLE, et. al.,
v. Civil Action No. 88-3130
Judge Joyce Hens Green
RONALD WILSON REAGAN, et. al.,
PLAINTIFFS' STATEMENT OF GENUINE ISSUES TO WHICH
NO MATERIAL DISPUTE AND
MOTION FOR AN IMMEDIATE TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER
Once again plaintiffs reiterate that the only questions
for this Court to determine prior to issuing a TRO are (1) whether
there was probable cause for the seizure of plaintiffs' literature
(Comp. pares. 23, 25), (2) whether defendants have arbitrarily
applied the "camping" regulation against plaintiffs
(Comp. pares. 46-58), (3) whether those signs seized -- with or
without "probable cause" (Comp. pares. 13, 14, 17, 22,
23, 25, 36) -- are in substantial compliance to the regulations,
and (4) whether defendants should be restrained from again seizing
those same signs when plaintiffs return them to the park. Absent
these determinations plaintiffs fear to return to their constitutionally-protected
activities. Comp. pares. 39, 60.
Plaintiffs, presently suffering the disruption of their
expressive religious activities, routine harassment and intimidation
from police agents, initially asked to be heard on the issue of
injunctive relief "as quickly as possible." E.g. Motion
to Reconsider, filed March 25, 1991.
On April 8, 1991 Federal Defendants' filed an Opposition
to Plaintiffs' Motion to Renew Their Motion for a Temporary Restraining
Order and Preliminary Injunction ("Opposition").
Defendants' Opposition, only three pages long, is accompanied
by two numbered exhibits and an approximately two-inch-thick conglomeration
of assorted, unnumbered disordered, incomplete, unsworn, often
unrelated police reports.
Given the detailed allegations of plaintiffs' Complaint
in support of their supplemental pleadings for injunctive relief,
and their sworn declarations affirming their allegations, plaintiffs
believe that defendants' Opposition raises no material challenge
to plaintiffs' motion for a TRO with respect to the issues of
plaintiffs' signs and literature, but rather serves to strengthen
their entitlement to immediate relief. F.R.Civ.P. 65(b)(1)(2).
Although given ample time to do so defendants' Opposition
utterly fails even to address the issues at bar. Therefore, the
Court should find these issue. to be undisputed.
GENUINE ISSUES TO WHICH THERE IS NO MATERIAL
1) There was no probable cause for the seizure of plaintiffs'
literature (Comp. pares. 23, 25).
2) Those signs seized -- with or without "probable
cause" (Comp. pares. 13, 14, 17, 22, 23, 25, 36) -- are in
substantial compliance to the regulations.
3) Defendants should be restrained from again seizing those
same signs when they are returned to the park
4) Vigils are allowed. Video @ 46.43.
5) The "rules" kept changing (video @ 44.58-48.00
and 101.45-102.16), as defendants played their "game."
Complaint pare. 54, Declaration Allen Tubis, pare. 18.
6) Police agents accosted plaintiffs "at midnight,
3:00 a.m., 6:00 a.m., and other early morning hours" (Opposition
pg. 2), and threatened them with arrest.
7) Defendants exhibited no reluctance in arresting people
for purportedly violating the "camping" regulation,
and even argue that "(o)ne effect of the increased police
presence was strict enforcement of the regulations governing Lafayette
Park.. Opposition pg. 2. However, with the sole exception of Mr.
Galindez (arrested after being in contact with a sleeping bag
for seventeen minutes, video @ 101.50-102.25) and plaintiff intervenor
Love (also arrested once, but not yet convicted), none of the
named plaintiffs was or has been arrested for camping during the
period at issue.
ISSUES TO WHICH THERE IS DISINGENUOUS DISPUTE
Counsel's Opposition simply dodges the undisputed fact"
that (a) vigils are allowed, (b) the "rules" kept changing
and (c) defendants were playing a "game. " Counsel seeks
to evade the issue of whether defendants have arbitrarily applied
the "camping" regulation against plaintiffs (Comp. pares.
46-58) by fashioning defendants' Opposition to resemble an impromptu
indictment and conviction.
Notwithstanding counsel's pretense of guilt without trial,
the undisputed facts in this case should highlight the absurdity
of counsel's pretense.
In fact, what the video undisputedly shows is that "at
midnight, 3:00 a.m., 6:00 a.m., and other early morning hours"
the plaintiffs were awake and recording continuous visitations
by police agents. What these undisputed fact. do underscore is
that only a lunatic, seriously devoted to masochisim, would choose
"Lafayette Park as a sleeping facility, night after night.
" Compare, Opposition pg. 2,
There is nothing in the record to even suggest that any
plaintiff is lunatic or masochistic. There is plenty of evidence
that they are engaged in a constitutionally-protected expressive
religious exercise. Hence plaintiffs' modest request that the
Court establish simple definition" of "casual sleep"
and "property" for the purpose of distinguishing a constitutionally
protected "vigil" from the crime of "camping"
can only be seen a" eminently reasonable and, under the circumstances,
Although defendants' Opposition raises no specific challenge
to plaintiffs' allegations regarding signs, among the pile of
paper appended to defendants' pleading are some unsworn documents
which, if viewed in a light extremely favorable to defendants,
might be seen as posing some question. Exhibits 1, 2 and 3, hereto.
Thanks to the miracle of video technology the Court can
now weigh the credibility of the respective parties' representations
without conducting a hearing, thus eliminating the risk of placing
defendants' agents in a position where they might feel
- 4 -
"Once again plaintiffs have moved for immediate injunctive
relief arising out of their prohibited use of Lafayette Park
as a camping facility (Opposition, pg. 1).... (T)he video underscores
that plaintiffs, while continuing to hide behind the ruse that
they are engaging in a twenty-four hour vigil, are in fact using
Lafayette Park as their own living space (and) makes it clear
that plaintiffs at a minimum were, and still are, violating the
camping proscription of ... 36 C.F.R 7.96(i)(1)." Opposition
pgs. 2 & 3.
compelled to continue distorting the truth or perhaps even
go to the length of commiting perjury.
For example, by comparing Officer Hill's Criminal Incident
Record #002969 (Exhibit 1 hereto), with Sgt. McNally's performance
on the video tape (@ 1.54-2.48), and Complaint pare. 22, the Court
could reasonably decide (a) whether there was actually probable
cause to seize plaintiff Love's sign a. "unattended,"
(b) whether it was reasonable for Officer Hill or Sgt. McNally
to think that the "Suspect" was actually "Unknown,."
or (c) whether it was Officer Hill (as Exhibit 1 might seem to
indicate) rather than Sgt. McNally (Video (@ 1.54-2.48, Complaint
pare. 22) who actually seized the sign.
Boldly counsel has included Criminal Incident Record numbers
90-003768 and 91-003768 (Exhibits 2 & 3, hereto}, among his
pile of papers. These exhibits, signed by Officer Lane, Sgt. McNally,
and Lt. Melanson, appear to assert that the sign confiscated from
Concepcion and Thomas on February 2, 1991 (Comp. pare. 23) measured
"4 feet across and 5 feet 3 inches tall" and so had
"front surface dimensions larger than the 4'x4' allowed.
As plaintiffs have already pointed out, producing and measuring
the signs right in the courtroom would remove any doubt as to
the actual dimensions. Memorandum in Support of Plaintiffs' Supplemental
Motion at pg. 6. Alternatively, considering defendants have not
sworn to the accuracy of Exhibits 2 & 3, the Court might forego
a hearing by relying on the veracity of William Thomas' Declaration
(Exhibit 4, hereto), and simply directing defendants to return
the signs to Concepcion.
Thus, plaintiffs believe that, according to Rule 65(B)(1)(2),
the Court would be fully justified in granting plaintiffs' motion
for a Temporary Restraining Order merely on the strength of the
papers filed by both parties.
CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE
I, William Thomas , hereby state that, on this 15th day
of April, 1991 I caused a copy of the foregoing Plaintiffs' Statement
of Genuine Issues to Which There is no Material Dispute and Motion
for an Immediate Temporary Restraining Order to be hand-delivered
to the offices of Jay B. Stevens, U.S. Attorney for the District
of Columbia at Judiciary Square, 555 4th Street N.W., Washington,
D.C., and the Office of the Corporation Counsel for the District
Respectfully submitted this 15th day
of April, 1991,
/s/ W. Thomas
William Thomas, pro se
2817 llth Street, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20001