A Baton Rouge police officer, who was wounded during a spate of racial unrest, is suing Black Lives Matter and some of its leadership for inciting the violence that led to his injuries.
Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Deputy Nicholas Tullier isn’t named in the suit, according to the Associated Press, but a description of the plaintiff, in the first several paragraphs of the filing, seems to match Tuiller’s description.
Tuiller was seriously injured, and one of his colleagues was killed, when a gunman ambushed officers in East Baton Rouge in the summer of 2016. Authorities later said that the gunman—a black military veteran—was lying in wait for law enforcement, and acted in retaliation for several police shootings of black men that took place earlier in the year.
Now, that same officer claims that Mckeeson, who was arrested during a protest in East Baton Rouge just before the shooting, was one of several people “inciting violence” against police officers—and is therefore at least partially responsbile for the attack.
“Incitement to violence” is one of the few categories of speech the Supreme Court has determined is not protected under the First Amendment, but the concept requires a plaintiff to connect an individual’s speech directly to an ensuing event.
Although Mckeeson, and the four other BLM leaders named in the suit, are outspoken activists in support of “Black Lives Matter,” its questionable whether their actions had any impact on the individual who eventually shot Tuiller and his colleagues.
This is also not the first time Mckeeson has been sued for “inciting violence.” The same legal team representing the East Baton Rouge officer filed a lawsuit against Mckeeson last March on behalf of a different Baton Rouge cop who was injured during a BLM protest.
A federal judge is already handling an appeal from that case, deciding whether that cop even has standing to sue Mckeeson, since Black Lives Matter doesn’t technically have a centralized organizational system, and Mckeeson isn’t—at least officially—a representative of the movement.