By RYAN C. SCHMIDTKY, Associated Press A Kentucky civil lawsuit that seeks to overturn the state’s anti-discrimination law has been dismissed by a judge who ruled it could not proceed because of a lack of evidence.
In the ruling released Monday, Judge Robert M. B. Hagerstrom of the Kentucky Court of Appeals said the law would not prevent a lawsuit if a plaintiff were to prevail in the case.
The Kentucky Civil Rights Act was signed into law in April 2014, after a string of high-profile hate crimes against African-Americans.
Hagersstrom dismissed the lawsuit last year in a separate lawsuit filed by the state Attorney General.
The two cases are similar in that they accuse the state of violating the constitutional rights of African-American plaintiffs.
Hagerstrom wrote that it would be difficult to show that Kentucky was violating the plaintiffs’ rights by passing the anti-diversity law.
“The Plaintiffs have not presented sufficient facts to show the plaintiffs have been or will be harmed by the discriminatory provisions of the (law),” he wrote.
He also wrote that the state failed to show it was the cause of any of the discriminatory acts committed by law enforcement officers.
Hagersstrom also ruled that the lawsuit would have to be dismissed as a class action.
It was filed by a group of African American businesses, residents and residents of the state, the Kentucky Civil Liberties Union, and other groups, including the Kentucky Human Rights Commission.
Hats off to the attorneys who made that decision, and the lawyers who litigated that case.
Haggerstrom also wrote, “It is hard to believe that the legislature was unaware of the potential consequences of passing such a law and decided to pass it without first looking into its constitutionality.”
The state’s Attorney General, who also filed a separate case, said the dismissal of the lawsuit was a victory for all Kentuckians.