A pastor in Princeton, New Jersey, has sued his city for allegedly short circuiting his first amendment rights. Pastor Michael Stockwell says that he was simply trying to use a loud speaker to spread the word on campus, but was given a summons for disorderly behavior.
But he made seven court appearances and beat the rap. Now, the preacher is suing the entire town for what they’ve done to him.
Stockwell travels across the country giving sermons and preaching on streets and in public parks. He makes a record of his experiences on the blog Cross Country Evangelism. In his lawsuit, he claims that he was standing on the sidewalk near Princeton University, sending a message “to the students that drinking and fornication were sinful and that people should repent in order to be saved through the grace of Jesus Christ,” according to the lawsuit.
“That is a message that is not going to be well received,” said Michael Daily Jr., Stockwell’s attorney.
That led to some students calling the police to get rid of the pastors, creating additional conflict.
“You have got your date there and the last thing you need is a preacher telling you you shouldn’t be drinking and hooking up later,” Daily said.
In addition to suing the city, Stockwell names Officer Luis Navas, Sgt. Carol Raymond, Lt. Robert Currier, Capt. Nicholas Sutter Police Chief David Dudeck, and former borough Administrator Robert Bruschi, former Borough Council President Kevin Wilkes, and former members of the public safety committee David Goldfarb and Mildred Trotman.