District Court Strikes Down Manchester’s Anti-Panhandling Law
(Manchester, NH) - The U.S. District Court in Concord ruled Thursday that the Manchester ordinance and police practices violate the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
The 65-page ruling was in response to a lawsuit brought by Theresa Petrullo, an Army and Navy veteran who was cited for disorderly conduct for peacefully speaking with motorists and seeking donations from a public place.
In October of 2015, the Manchester City Council enacted the ordinance that bans a person from peacefully receiving a charitable contribution from a person in a motor vehicle.
With this ruling on the Manchester ordinance, similar ordinances passed in Concord, Somersworth and Rochester are now also unconstitutional.