A federal lawsuit against the City of Linton that made it to the #2 news story of 2020 has been dismissed.
Earlier in 2020, the City placed a gate at the entrance to a part of the Conservation Club grounds, otherwise known as Lee/Sherrard Park. A long-time neighbor to the property, Jarod Lee, requested a key to gate to use the grounds as he always had growing up, specifically going there to fish and be with and enjoy nature. City officials said no.
After not being successful in attaining a key, an online petition began gathering 100’s of signatures. When City officials still refused to provide a key to Lee, while other City employees were using the grounds for personal and recreational use, Lee claimed, the dispute boiled over into a federal lawsuit. The suit against the City of Linton with the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana helping Lee, who is confined to a wheelchair, made the case that the locked gates were a violation of the American Disabilities Act of 1990.
Key to the dismissal, though, was the dispute over whether the park was closed to just Lee and others with handicaps, or if the park was closed to everyone except for official city business, such as security checks, maintenance, and waste disposal. Lee claims others were able to use the property, while he was not. The City claims the gates are locked to keep everyone out, which was reportedly at the suggestion of their liability insurance company. A copy of the dismissal document was attained by The Lintonian and embedded below:
Newly install gates at Lee/Sherrard Park entry, file photo