Weatherford Democrat

Local News

February 22, 2013

Media weigh in on Wallbuilders case

By CHRISTIN COYNE

Nearly two dozen news media and public advocacy organizations weighed in last week on a matter before the Texas Supreme Court involving a lawsuit filed by David Barton and Parker County-based Wallbuilders against two former Texas State Board of Education candidates.

The Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, a nonprofit that offers free legal support to journalists, along with 19 news organizations and other groups, filed a friend-of-the-court brief with the Supreme Court last week supporting a request by Judy A. Jennings and Rebecca Bell-Metereau to overturn an appeals court decision.

In early 2012, 415th District Judge Graham Quisenberry denied the defendants’ motion to dismiss the case under a new state anti-SLAPP (Strategic Litigation Against Public Participation) law that seeks to protect First Amendment rights for speakers who may be frivously sued to inhibit their speech.

They hoped to require Barton to provide evidence of the claims to avoid having his case dismissed.

Jennings and Bell-Metereau appealed Quisenberry’s decision to the Second Court of Appeals in Fort Worth but the Fort Worth court denied the appeal on Aug. 16, finding that, because of the wording of the law, they could not hear an appeal.

Barton sued the women, who ran unsuccessfully for seats on the Texas Board of Education, for videos they aired that Barton, a political advisor, said cast him as a white supremacist and liar.

Attorneys for Jennings and Bell-Metereau have asked the state’s highest court to hear the issue, arguing that the legislature never intended to deny the opportunity of appeal.

It’s the first time an appeals court has interpreted how the new state law works, Julie Ford, an attorney for Jennings and Bell-Metereau, told the Democrat in October.

“We’re hoping that the Supreme Court can give us some guidance on how this new statute works,” Ford said.

Text Only
Local News
  • Dept. of State Health Services releases Aug. schedules

    Texas Department of State Health Services immunization clinics for August:

    July 24, 2014

  • 0723 loc WC upward bound.jpg Traveling the path to success

    Several factors aligned to set Louriann Villa on the path to success including a mother she considers a hero, the Weatherford College Upward Bound program and scholarship funds.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Weatherford DAR to host summer workshop

    Weatherford Chapter-DAR will be hosting the District II summer workshop with 94 members from across North Texas attending on Saturday, July 26, from 8:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. at North Side Baptist Church.

    July 23, 2014

  • Painting with a Twist/Painting with a Purpose

    Looking for a fun night out? Join us for the Parker Paws Painting with a Purpose fundraiser from 7-9 p.m. 

    July 20, 2014

  • DAILY RECORD: Marriages and deaths

    Marriages and deaths recorded from July 9, 2014, to July 15, 2014. This information is being provided as a courtesy by the Parker County Clerk. Every effort is made to see that the information is correct and complete. The Parker County Clerk is not responsible should there be an error within the information provided.

    July 19, 2014

  • Master Gardener training orientation dates set

    The Parker County office of Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service will be offering a Master Gardener Intern Training Course this fall. 

    July 19, 2014

  • Soulis named to Dean’s List at Washington University

    ST. LOUIS — Johnathon Taylor Soulis, of Weatherford, was named to the Dean’s List for the spring 2014 semester at Washington University in St. Louis. Soulis is enrolled in the university’s School of Engineering and Applied Science.

    July 19, 2014

  • CASA - Hope for Children unveils new website, videos

    CASA-Hope for Children has always been able to help 100% of the neglected and abused children taken into the foster care system, but because of the overwhelming number of children that have been taken into the system that may not be the reality much longer. 

    July 18, 2014

  • Driver speed, seatbelt compliance surveys show improvements

    The Weatherford Police Department utilized grant funding from the Texas Department of Transportation to fund overtime salaries for extra enforcement during the week of the Fourth of July. The extra patrols worked to ensure drivers were complying with posted speed limits, wearing seatbelts and were not driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol in an effort to keep our local roadways safe.

    July 18, 2014

  • Sheila Gerrald CASA announces Advocate of the Quarter

    CASA Hope for Children volunteer Sheila Gerrald has been chosen as Advocate of the Quarter for the Second Quarter of 2014. 

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

Must Read
Top News
House Ads
AP Video
Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands