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Murder suspect says court’s ‘In God We Trust’ sign violates Cherokee beliefs
Just one day after a courthouse in Tennessee erected a sign saying “In God We Trust” — the same motto inscribed on U.S. currency — an Indian defendant charged with attempted murder petitioned for case dismissal, claiming his religion follows the spiritual way known as the “Red Road.”
Kenneth Darrin Fisher, 22, of Clinton, Tenn., is charged with trying to kill his wife and also with illegal weapons possession, The Associated Press reported. He’s set for a March trial. But when he saw the sign posted by Anderson County Courthouse, he found a possible exemption from a court hearing due to his religious beliefs.
Citing his Cherokee Indian heritage, he told the judge that his case should be dropped because he spiritually abides by the “Red Road,” the Knoxville News Sentinel reported.
His lawyer argued that the courthouse inscription converts the building into a “temple of fundamentalist Christianity,” in conflict with the First Amendment, AP reported.
The district attorney said he’s looking at the motion and will respond later.
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About the Author
Cheryl Chumley is a continuous news writer for The Washington Times. Previously, she was part of the start-up team for The Washington Times’ digital aggregation product, Times247. She’s also a 2008-2009 Robert Novak journalism fellow with The Phillips Foundation. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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