Recently, a federal judge ruled that the tactics used by police in order to control Ferguson protesters are unconstitutional. U.S District Judge asked the police not to use tear gas on protesters and ordered the law enforcement agencies to halt the “5 second rule.” This rule demands that protesters should keep moving instead of standing still. However, the order comes to stop enforcing such requirements because it violates constitutional rights of the protesters.
Catherine Perry, U.S District Judge issued an injunction stopping the practice of keep moving and standing still on sidewalks. No doubt, the injunction is a great win for law-abiding and peaceful protesters who believe in rule of law. According to Perry’s injunction, police violated the free speech rights as well as due process rights. Moreover, the injunction does not stop the police from controlling or protecting crowd against violence using lawful means. It no longer limits the abilities of officers in enforcing state’s laws.
Some of protesters filed the lawsuit requesting to restrict the police from using tear gas and excessive forces during demonstrations. Perry declared that the citizens have a constitutional right to gather in wake of tragic death of Michael Brown Jr. Nevertheless, they do not have any right to harm other citizens or police officers. The police should perform their duties and responsibilities efficiently as nothing in this injunction prevent them in doing so.
Police has been using varying tactics to control the crowd after the officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Michael Brown Jr. Some police officers started to instruct protesters that they cannot stand still for more than 5 seconds and should keep moving all times. Legal observers quickly refused to accept this “5 second rule” and clearly state that it tends to enhance community tension. Police tried to undermine the protester’s rights to demonstrate. However, on constitutional grounds, the law enforcement officials failed the police’s attempt in carrying out such a practice.