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Cooley, ACLU help defend musician's free speech

Attorneys with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and the law firm Cooley LLP recently settled a case with the city of Oceanside, helping ensure a local musician's right to play in public.

The two organizations represented musician Mark Mayville, who was found guilty of violating an Oceanside municipal code that banned any form of live music on any public street or sidewalk.

Despite a negotiated settlement with the city, which included Oceanside's allowance of nondisruptive, musical performances on its sidewalks, Mayville continued to be harassed by police. They threatened to detain him.

In December, the ACLU and Cooley filed a complaint in federal court, asking the court to declare Oceanside’s anti‐solicitation, loitering, obstruction, and business license ordinances unconstitutional as applied to Mayville’s musical performances.

The city of Oceanside agreed to settle the case, and last week a district court judge approved a settlement that ensures the fundamental right to engage in speech in a public forum.

The Cooley pro bono team for Mayville included partner Anthony Stiegler and associates Kraig Jennett and Shannon Sorrells.

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