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Settlement: Chalking on sidewalk is free speech

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MINNEAPOLIS — The American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota said Tuesday that it had chalked up another victory — literally — for the First Amendment in the case of an anti-war activist.

Under a settlement agreement, the city of Minneapolis, the Federal Protective Service and a private security firm agreed to pay $5,000 to settle a suit brought by the ACLU on behalf of an activist who wrote an anti-war slogan in chalk on a public sidewalk in 2011. All parties agreed in the settlement that using erasable chalk on public sidewalks is a protected First Amendment right in Minneapolis.

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