Berkeley College Republicans, Young America’s Foundation lawsuit against UC Berkeley dismissed

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A lawsuit filed by the Berkeley College Republicans and the Young America’s Foundation, or YAF, against the campus, UC Berkeley administrators and UCPD was dismissed Friday by a federal judge, allowing a 30-day period for plaintiffs to amend their original complaint.

The case was filed in April in relation to Ann Coulter’s campus event, which had been scheduled for April but was postponed by the campus to May. Coulter canceled her event two days after the filing. The complaint alleged that UC Berkeley administrators and campus police had “systematically and intentionally suppressed” free speech by imposing “unconstitutionally vague” policies concerning hosting high-profile speakers on campus. These policies come in the form of venue restrictions and campus curfews, the complaint alleged.

A press release issued after Friday’s motion by the Dhillon Law Group, representing BCR and YAF, stated that the plaintiffs intend to amend their original complaint by the judge’s stipulated 30-day deadline.

“YAF and BCR will file an amended complaint with additional facts and allegations to frontally challenge UC Berkeley’s continued refusal to honor well-settled First and Fourteenth Amendment civil rights,” the press release stated.

Harmeet Dhillon, the attorney for BCR and YAF, said this is a standard step in federal court proceedings, especially when the case is filed against a government entity. Dhillon also alleged that additional damages concerning speaker restrictions occurred after the case was filed, since the case had been filed before Coulter’s event fell through.

“We’re looking forward to amending our claim to add … additional facts and to having our day in the court to protect the free speech rights of all Berkeley students,” Dhillon said.

BCR External Vice President Naweed Tahmas declined to comment.

Campus spokesperson Dan Mogulof said the campus is “pleased,” adding that he believes the judge’s decision affirmed that campus’s actions are in accordance with the First Amendment.

“We’re confident that we have in the past and we will in the future always comply with the law and the Constitution of the United States,” Mogulof said.

Contact Cade Johnson at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter at @cadejohnson98.