As previously reported by Patch, the planned protest follows an appeals court ruling this week in favor of the City of Manchester in regard to a lawsuit filed by Wesboro Baptist Church members challenging Manchester's funeral protest ordinance. The ordinance prohibits protests within 300 feet of a funeral one hour before and one hour after services.
(Read Previous Story: Appeals Court Rules Manchester Can Restrict Funeral Protests)
Manchester Police Sergeant Gerard Johnson tells Patch that police were notified by Westboro members that they plan to protest the court ruling at Schroeder Park from 2:45 p.m. to 3:15 p.m. Saturday.
"I'm guessing they're going to come, stand around with their signs, state their case and be on their way," Johnson tells Patch.
Johnson said there will be a police presence at the protest as a precaution to protect the rights of Westboro's church members as well as anybody else who attends.
"It's a public place and they have the same rights as any other person does to voice their opinions," Johnson explained. "We're certainly sensitive to that. The first amendment is near and dear to all of us and we want to make sure their rights are protected too."
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