Albert Snyder, the father of a Marine killed in Iraq in 2006, sued Fred Phelps after Westboro Baptist “Church” picketed his son’s funeral. A jury awarded the father a $3 million judgment.
Phelps appealed the ruling and on Friday, an appeals court overturned the judgment based on free speech rights. Snyder was ordered to pay Phelps’ court costs of $16,500.
Snyder has said he has no intention of paying Phelps any money and the Supreme Court agreed today to hear this first amendment case. The competing argument that the court will consider is the privacy and religious rights of mourners.