** Update as of 7/20/19
- Click here to view the 4th DCA decision affirming the lower court decision
- Click here to view the motion to appeal the 4th DCA decision
The motion to appeal the 4th District Court of Appeal decision argues that the appellate panel's ruling is contrary to prior decisions issued in the Fourth District, which have always upheld the constitutional rights of citizens to communicate with government officials about matters of public interest. There has never been a ruling from the 4th DCA that denied a citizen the right to petition government for redress of grievances, that is, to complain to government about public issues. The motion to appeal asks for a rehearing by the full court or for certification of questions of great public import to the Florida Supreme Court.


THE LAKE POINT SLAPP SUIT AGAINST MAGGY HURCHALLA

Lake Point is a rockpit project in western Martin County controlled by George Lindemann Jr and his family.

Maggy Hurchalla sent emails to Martin County commissioners criticizing the project.

Lake Point sued the South Florida Water Management District, Martin County and Maggy Hurchalla. The suit claimed that Hurchalla's communications to commissioners were "tortious interference with a business relationship".

The Lake Point SLAPP suit was originally filed in February, 2013. 

In February, 2018, a Martin County jury found Maggy Hurchalla guilty of tortious interference and assessed damages of $4.3 million dollars.

Based on the circuit judge's jury instructions, the case will set a new standard for a citizen's right to complain to government officials

Maggy Hurchalla's appeal was filed with the 4th District Court of Appeals on Aug 24, 2018.

Four amicus briefs have been filed in behalf of Hurchalla. The four briefs were joined by the following organizations and individuals:
  • Amicus 1 - Attorney Paul Crochet on behalf of First Amendment Foundation, League of Women Voters of Martin County, Florida Press Association, Florida Society of News Editors, Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club, American Civil Liberties Union Foundation of Florida, Fane Lozeman, and the Brechner Center for Freedom of Information 
  • Amicus 2 - Attorney Jack Cox on behalf of the Guardians of Martin County 
  • Amicus 3 - Attorney Richard Grosso on behalf of Professors Canan and Pring 
  • Amicus 4 - Attorney Richard Grosso on behalf of Bullsugar, Florida Wildlife Federation, Friends of the Everglades Foundation 
An answering brief from Lake Point is expected by Oct 19, 2018.

For more details and the history of the case, see www.slappmaggy.com

Legal defense donations are appreciated.

Mail check to: 
Maggy’s SLAPP-Back Fund,  PO Box 891,  Stuart, Fl.  34995 

Or click the Donate button for PayPal