Judge rules Lejeune can't limit anti-Islamic stickers

April 1, 2010 8:25:31 AM PDT
A federal judge has ruled that Camp Lejeune officials went too far when they banned a civilian employee from coming on base with anti-Islamic stickers on his car.

Retired Marine Gunnery Sgt. Jesse Nieto filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court two years ago when he was not allowed to come to his job with the stickers that included that said "ISLAM (equals) TERRORISM" and a threat to defecate on the Quran.

He also had a decal to commemorate the 2000 bombing of the USS Cole, in which 17 crew members died, including Nieto's youngest son.

U.S. District Judge Malcolm J. Howard says a Camp Lejeune regulation targeting inflammatory speech on base was improperly applied to Nieto's decals and not to pro-Islamic messages that may be just as incendiary. Howard concluded the application of the rule violated Nieto's free speech.

Nieto did not seek monetary damages in his lawsuit.

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