City officials in Rock Hill, South Carolina plan to rewrite a city law that makes it illegal to “oppose, resist, or interfere with any police officer in the discharge of the police officer’s official duties.” As presently written, the law allows police to arrest someone for not obeying any police orders, irrespective of the legality of those commands.
For example, if a citizen of Rock Hill is having a political discussion with a neighbor on his front lawn, and a police officer walks by and tells him to shut up because he disagrees with the citizen’s political views, that citizen can be arrested for disobeying the officer if he continues to engage in political speech; by doing so, he would be “opposing” the officer’s directive, and in clear violation of the ordinance.
Sheesh. Have the lawmakers in Rock Hill heard of the First and Fourth Amendments? Evidently not. And they apparently didn’t realize either that the ordinance likely violates due process for being unconstitutionally vague. A sad state of affairs, indeed.
According to the Charlotte Observer, no timeline has been given for rewriting the ordinance.