Judge: Kent State Can’t Charge For Protest Security

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CLEVELAND (AP) – A judge is blocking Kent State University officials from charging $1,800 to provide security officers for a discussion planned at the student center featuring a gun-rights advocate whose September demonstration on the Ohio campus drew protesters.

The conservative student group planning the discussion next Monday is challenging Kent State’s policies on security fees in a lawsuit, arguing they impede free speech.

Federal Judge John Adams granted a temporary restraining order Tuesday. Adams said the possibility of protesters shouldn’t put the financial burden of security on the speaker and the student group.

The university isn’t commenting on the lawsuit but has described its security fee assessments as “viewpoint neutral.”

Kent State spent about $65,000 on security for the September demonstration and counter-protest, which ended up being mostly peaceful.