Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
In this May 12, 2014 file photo, the interior of the Pontiac Silverdome, former home of the NFL football Detroit Lions, is seen in Pontiac, Mich. An auction featuring more than 3,000 leftover items in the Pontiac Silverdome has fetched about $500,000. Items up for sale included end-zone turf, pretzel warmers, a boxing ring, a soccer field, flat-screen televisions and scoreboards. The stadium's copper wiring sold for more than $77,000. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Feds want lawsuit by Insane Clown Posse dismissed
First Published Jun 23 2014 09:11 am • Last Updated Jun 23 2014 03:51 pm

Detroit • Lawyers for the federal government and fans of rap-metal duo Insane Clown Posse clashed in court Monday over whether the FBI can be sued for the negative fallout of describing them as a loosely organized gang.

Some fans, called Juggalos, claim to have lost custody of children, lost jobs and been denied housing simply because they enjoy the music of the duo from the Detroit area. Another fan was told he couldn’t apply to the Army without removing or covering Insane Clown Posse tattoos, usually a man running with a hatchet.

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

Justice Department attorney Amy Powell said the group and its fans have no standing to sue. She said the government is not responsible for how police agencies use information in the 2011 national gang report.

Powell said a "subjective chill" as alleged by plaintiffs was not enough to be in court.

"There is no general right of protection to a social association," she said, referring to First Amendment violations argued by Insane Clown Posse and its fans.

The FBI report labeled the Juggalos as a "loosely organized hybrid gang." It said those who identify as Juggalos have committed assaults and vandalism, and a "small number" of them have engaged in more serious crimes.

There is no reference to Juggalos in the 2013 report, Powell told U.S. District Judge Robert Cleland.

Saura Sahu, an attorney for four fans, encouraged the judge to keep the lawsuit alive. He said the government’s analysis of gangs is critical information for police but the report "went too far here."

Cleland suggested the government has the upper hand in the case. He said he’d probably make a decision in July.

Insane Clown Posse members Joseph Bruce, or Violent J, and Joseph Utsler, known as Shaggy 2 Dope, are plaintiffs but didn’t appear in court Monday. They are known for wearing face paint when they perform.


story continues below
story continues below

———

Follow Ed White at http://twitter.com/edwhiteap



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Access your e-Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.