U.S. District Judge Michael W. Mosman ordered Schumacher and his wife, Linda, to pay for the legal representation of the very people the couple sought to punish. His ruling, made public Friday, said the Schumachers had, without evidence, wrongly tried to restrict the protesters' free-speech rights.
The Schumachers' $6.6 million suit "disparaged their reputations with accusations of criminal conduct, terrorist affiliations, and responsibility for 'shutting down' a business whose financial solvency was questionable before the protesting activities began," Mosman wrote in an opinion and order signed Wednesday.
Last April, the Schumachers responded to 18 months of noisy demonstrations outside their downtown Portland fur salon by filing a civil rights lawsuit against their alleged tormenters.
The suit named two national animal-rights groups, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and In Defense of Animals; more than 20 protesters (most of them unidentified); and the Animal Liberation Front, an underground group characterized by the FBI as a domestic terrorism organization.
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Look's like the protesters have some people to thank also! Bravo.