Pastor Terry Jones imprisoned to prevent Detroit Koran protest
A local judge jailed Pastor Terry Jones of Gainesville, Florida and his associate Wayne Sapp after a court found their planned protest outside the Islamic Center of America in Dearborn, Michigan, could lead to violence. During his court appearance, Pastor Jones argued that the Koran “promotes terrorist activities around the world.”
He also insisted that his right to protest against Islam was protected by the First Amendment to the US Constitution. “The First Amendment does us no good if it confines us to saying what is popular,” he pointed out.
But Dearborn Police Chief Ronald Haddad testified that his department had received information about serious threats made against Pastor Jones from local residents, and argued that his protest could lead to violence if allowed.
Prosecutor Robert Moran argued that the protest had nothing to do with the First Amendment and at stake were security and peace in the community. The jury sided with the prosecution and Judge Mark Somers set bond at the symbolic amount of $1 each for the two pastors, which they initially refused to pay.
Following their refusal, both were escorted to a local jail. But local media reported both men changed their minds after spending about an hour behind bars and posted the $1 bond. Under the judge’s ruling, both Pastor Jones and Mr Sapp are now prohibited by the court from going to the mosque for three years.
But Pastor Jones was quoted by The Detroit Free Press as saying the two “will come back next week” to try to organise a new protest. UK Telegraph.