Three Idaho churchgoers who were arrested last fall for not wearing masks at an outdoor service are suing city authorities for violating their constitutional rights.
The Thomas More Society filed a lawsuit this week on behalf of Gabriel Rench, Sean Bohnet, and Rachel Bohnet against the City of Moscow, Idaho, as well as the city’s police chief, its prosecuting attorney, and the two arresting police officers.
Rench and the Bohnets made national news last September when approximately 300 people assembled outdoors to sing psalms in front of city hall in Moscow, a town of approximately 25,000 people about 80 miles south of Spokane, Washington.
Organized by Christ Church, a prominent evangelical congregation in the town, the event consisted of about 20 minutes of singing and was intended in part to protest Moscow Mayor Bill Lambert’s repeatedly extended mask mandate. Upon learning of the planned event, city officials had arranged small yellow dots six feet apart in the parking lot as guidance for the participants.
Speaking exclusively to The Daily Wire after a county magistrate judge threw out the city’s case against him in January, Rench explained that police approached his mother during the psalm sing and asked if she was with him. A mother standing with her son was presumably acceptable because she was family, but when Rench placed his arm around his friend and told the officers that he was also with him, they asked for his identification.