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Laguna Beach

March 21, 2000|Sharon Nagy, (949) 248-2168

About 10 anti-gay protesters held vigil in front of City Hall on Monday morning to protest a Police Department policy that allows residents to report incidents of hate speech.

An opposing group of nine pro-gay protesters, wearing black clothes and masks, carried signs on the lawn near the Recreation Department.

The anti-gay group, from Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kan., says the Police Department's policy infringes on the constitutional right to free speech.

In December, the department adopted the hate-speech policy, which applies to national origin, ethnicity or comments regarding sexual orientation, said Police Chief Jim Spreine.

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