Woman arrested for wearing hijab sues Georgia city

DOUGLASVILLE, Ga. (AP) — A Muslim woman who was arrested after she refused to remove her headscarf in a west Georgia courthouse has sued the city and the officers who arrested her.

Lisa Valentine claims in the lawsuit filed today that her free speech rights were violated when she was ordered to serve 10 days in jail for contempt of court in December 2008 after she refused to remove her hijab at a courtroom in Douglasville, about 20 miles west of Atlanta.

Valentine was released in less than a day.

The lawsuit was filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and its Georgia chapter.

Valentine’s arrest forced judicial officials to overhaul courtroom policy. The Judicial Council of Georgia in July 2009 voted to allow religious and medical headgear into Georgia courtrooms.

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