Cranston Votes Not To Appeal Prayer Banner Case



Salon Staff
February 17, 2012 9:09AM (UTC)

CRANSTON, R.I. (AP) — A Rhode Island public school district committee has voted not to appeal a federal court decision ordering the removal of a prayer banner displayed in a high school auditorium

The Cranston School Committee voted 5-2 Thursday night, after more than two hours of public hearings.

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A federal judge last month ruled the prayer banner at Cranston High School West was unconstitutional and ordered it removed in a lawsuit filed on behalf of 16-year-old atheist Jessica Ahlquist. Ahlquist is a junior at the school.

The legal battle over the banner made Ahlquist the target of online threats. She was also briefly shadowed by a police officer at school.

The banner was put up in 1963. It has been covered since the court ruling.

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Lawyers for Ahlquist are asking the court to order Cranston to pay $173,000 for legal fees.


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