No trial necessary in Baxter County Nativity scene lawsuit | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, October 1, 2015

No trial necessary in Baxter County Nativity scene lawsuit

Posted By on Thu, Oct 1, 2015 at 4:30 PM

Federal Judge Timothy Brooks has decided there won't need to be a trial of the lawsuit by a Mountain Home woman challenging all but a Nativity scene from display on the Baxter County Courthouse lawn during the Christmas season.

In an order issued Monday, he said the parties — including the American Humanists Association and Baxter County — had agreed there are no issues of material fact to be tried and that the court can rule as a matter of law. A bench trial scheduled later this month has been canceled. Both sides have motions pending for summary judgment.

A Mountain Home lawyer has erected the display every year and the county took the step of leasing a portion of the lawn to the Chamber of Commerce for $1 as an artifice to justify the display. It has refused to allow a winter solstice banner from humanists.

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