Feeds

Americans can swear at toilets, judge rules

First Amendment protects Pennsylvania bog-cuss woman

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

In what will undoubtedly be viewed by future generations as an landmark ruling, the Pennsylvania housewife charged with disorderly conduct for letting forth a stream of abuse during an overflowing toilet emergency has been acquitted, AP reports.

For those of you not up to speed on the Dawn Herb toilet-cuss outrage, the 33-year-old West Scranton pottymouth was confronted with an overflowing john on 11 October this year, and was reported by off-duty police officer Patrick Gilman when she let forth a stream of profanity.

Herb told the Scranton Times-Tribune: "The toilet was overflowing and leaking down into the kitchen and I was yelling [for my daughter] to get the mop... A guy is yelling, 'Shut the fuck up', and I yelled back, 'Mind your own business'."

Law enforcement operatives duly attended the scene of the outrage, and Herb was charged with disorderly conduct, on the grounds of "intent to cause public inconvenience, annoyance or alarm".

However, District Judge Terrence Gallagher earlier this week dismissed the charge on the grounds that while Herb's language "may be considered by some to be offensive, vulgar and imprudent", it is "protected speech pursuant to the First Amendment".

Barry Dyller, who represented Herb on behalf of the American Civil Liberties Union, praised the judge's good sense and insisted that past rulings have established that "colorful language" isn't illegal. He said: "He's exactly right ... in his reasoning. And it's important that the public understands this." ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
YARR! Pirates walk the plank: DMCA magnets sink in Google results
Spaffing copyrighted stuff over the web? No search ranking for you
In the next four weeks, 100 people will decide the future of the web
While America tucks into Thanksgiving turkey, the world will be taking over the net
Microsoft EU warns: If you have ties to the US, Feds can get your data
European corps can't afford to get complacent while American Big Biz battles Uncle Sam
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.