A federal judge today temporarily halted public access under the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act to certain records related to Moms for Liberty activist Melissa “Missy” Bosch‘s federal lawsuit against the Cabot School District.
The 60-day halt applies to documents that attorneys for the defendants, which include the Cabot School District, Superintendent Tony Thurman and the city of Cabot, contend are “attorney-client privileged or constitute attorney work product,” that were created after the filing of Bosch’s lawsuit last year and that relate directly to events or claims made in the litigation.
Judge Lee Rudofsky said the word “documents” applies to e-mails, letters, videos, recordings “and any other thing that could possibly be responsive to a FOIA request.” Further, he said the temporary ban applies to “anyone.”
In the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court, Bosch contends the school district wrongly limited her right to be on campus. As you may recall, an anonymous person posted audio clips in which Bosch mused at a Moms for Liberty meeting in June about gunning down a school librarian. In the recording, a woman complains about a librarian and says, “I’m telling you, if I had any mental issues, they would all be plowed down by a freaking gun right now.”
Bosch alleges a conspiracy under federal law by Cabot police and the Cabot School District to deprive her of her constitutional rights.
Defense attorneys have complained that Bosch’s attorneys, including Arkansas Democrat-Gazette columnist Robert Steinbuch, have been seeking to conduct evidence discovery — sharing of evidence with the opposing party — through request under the FOI Act instead of or in addition to normal court procedures.
The lawsuit is set for a jury trial starting Feb. 6 in Little Rock.