On Sunday, May 1, 2016 and continuing for several days, City of St. Augustine Code Enforcement, lawyers and apparatchiks harassed, intimidated and threatened with arrest our friend, talented visual artist Bruce Kevin Bates, a 1980 honors graduate of the Pratt Institute.
Bruce Bates is the lead plaintiff in Bates v. City of St. Augustine (Bates I, 2009 federal court order by Judge Marcia Morales Howard) and Bates v. City of St. Augustine (Bates II, 2016 federal court order by Judge Brian J. Davis).
City burghers are guilty of threatening Bruce Bates with arrest for painting on a very wide sidewalk located outside of the "prohibited area," also threatening wire artist Ms. Martha Hird for selling hand-made artistic silver jewelry there in front of A1A Aleworks.
This is a serious federal crime under 18 U.S.C. 241, 1512 and/or 1513: this stinks.
The City's bogus "ADA" justification will not hold water, but it is likely to lead to further remedies.
Be not afraid -- there are more of us than there are of them. The 25-year campaign of intimidation and harassment against visual artists was begun under ex-Mayor LEN WEEKS, continued under ex-Mayor JOE BOLES, and was aided and abetted from his earliest days as an eager-beaver ambitious patrolman by none other than former Police Chief DAVID SHOAR, now Sheriff, who is under FBI investigation.
Here's Bruce Bates protesting on Thursday, May 12, 2016.