Tennessee man suing officials over social media post arrest


A man holds a smart phone with the icons for the social networking apps Facebook, Instagram and Twitter seen on the screen in Moscow on March 23, 2018. – A public apology by Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg, on March 22, 2018 failed to quell outrage over the hijacking of personal data from millions of people, as critics demanded the social media giant go much further to protect privacy. (Photo by Kirill KUDRYAVTSEV / AFP) (Photo credit should read KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP via Getty Images)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A Tennessee man arrested over a social media post is suing law enforcement officers, claiming they violated his First Amendment rights.

The Tennessean reports Joshua Andrew Garton was arrested in January after posting a photograph that depicted two people urinating on a gravestone with a photo of a Dickson County sheriff’s officer who was fatally shot in 2018.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation determined the photo was fake, but Garton was still charged with harassment and jailed for nearly two weeks.

A lawsuit filed in federal court on Tuesday says Garton was the victim of false arrest and malicious prosecution.

The TBI and other defendants declined to comment.

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