Game Over for ACLU

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Santa Rosa County, FL – Court documents submitted by the ACLU and the School Board of Santa Rosa County yesterday have now confirmed what Liberty Counsel has maintained all along in the litigation over the unconstitutional Consent Decree in Santa Rosa County: the two anonymous Plaintiffs represented by the ACLU graduated from Pace High School in May 2009, and the ACLU has been litigating without clients ever since.

“Plaintiffs graduated from Pace High School on May 30, 2009,” indicated the Office of the Principal of Pace High School, one of the Defendants in the case. Moreover, the documents confirm that there are “no continuing contacts between Plaintiffs and Pace High School and/or the School District.” And, the documents confirm that the ACLU and the School District have known about the Plaintiffs’ graduation all along, “because Plaintiffs voluntarily disclosed their identity to their teachers and classmates,” and because Plaintiffs disclosed their grade level in prior discovery documents. Those discovery documents, now submitted to the Court, indicate that prior to May 2009, each Plaintiff advised the School Board and the ACLU that “I am currently a Pace High senior.”

These revelations spell the end of the unconstitutional Consent Decree agreed upon by the ACLU and the School District. Because the parties to that decree have graduated, the Court no longer has jurisdiction to enforce the decree and must vacate it. Moreover, the ACLU and the School District’s belated admissions will now subject them to possible sanctions for hiding these facts from the Court and causing a colossal waste of time and judicial resources in the year of litigation since Plaintiffs’ graduation. Politically speaking, the School Board will now have to justify its decision to enter into the Consent Decree in May 2009 and to pay the ACLU $200,000 in attorney’s fees, when it could have simply waited three more weeks for Plaintiffs to graduate and for their claims to automatically become moot by operation of law.

Mathew D. Staver, Founder of Liberty Counsel and Dean of Liberty University School of Law, commented: “The ACLU’s runaway train in Santa Rosa County has reached the end of the tracks. Even a first year law student knows that federal courts cannot enforce a Consent Decree absent jurisdiction over the parties. Now that the Plaintiffs’ graduation has been confirmed, Liberty Counsel will ask the Court to vacate the Consent Decree and every other decision it has rendered since the graduation of these two Plaintiffs. Liberty Counsel will also request that the Court severely sanction the ACLU for its deception. The day that freedom returns to Santa Rosa County is near.”

This article is excerpted from a Liberty Counsel press release.