Score one for zombie rights.
A lawsuit filed by a group of Minneapolis zombies received a second wind yesterday when the U.S. Court of Appeals issued a ruling in the living dead group's favor. The zombies say they were wrongfully arrested while protesting blind consumerism during the 2006 Aquatennial.
Background: on July 22, 2006, seven protesters wearing white powder, fake blood, and dark eyeshadow lurched down Nicollet Mall playing music from a sound system intent on spoofing mindless shopping. Acting on an anonymous 911 call, police showed up and arrested the ghoulish play-actors for disorderly conduct.
The zombies subsequently filed a federal lawsuit against the city of Minneapolis and its police. Arguing that their constitutional rights had been violated, the group sought damages of at least $50,000 per arrest. In September 2008, a judge dismissed those claims, ruling that police had probable cause for the arrests. The zombies appealed.
Which brings us to yesterday. From the Strib:
On Wednesday, the appellate court ruled that the officers should have more narrowly defined disorderly conduct. It was not enough that the zombies were loud and may have been bothering people. Their "expressive conduct" was protected by the Constitution, the court ruled.