Prosecutors to focus on conduct in Ohio free-speech case

CINCINNATI (AP) — Prosecutors say they will focus on conduct, not words, in the upcoming trial of a man who says he was charged after using the word “crippled” to promote a comedian with muscular dystrophy.

Forest Thomer of Cold Spring, Ky., faces trial Sept. 26 on a disorderly conduct charge. He was cited by Cincinnati police in May at a park after he asked people if they wanted to “laugh at the crippled girl” — Ally Bruener. She is in a wheelchair, and they were promoting her comedy show. Police say he shouted obscenities.

Thomer charges his free speech rights are being violated. The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that a prosecutor said Monday that his First Amendment rights aren’t being challenged, but that he was too loud and disorderly.

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