The U.S. Justice Department is challenging a ruling that an abortion opponent's letter saying someone might place an explosive under a Wichita doctor's car is constitutionally protected speech.
The Justice Department's Civil Rights Division filed a brief notice Thursday, saying it will appeal to the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals a federal judge's summary decision that Angel Dillard's letter was not a "true threat" under the law.
The Justice Department sued Dillard in 2011 under the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act.
The Metropolitan Area Planning Commission is expected to consider a request Thursday to rezone the clinic that formerly belonged to assassinated doctor, George Tiller. He performed abortions at the facility in east Wichita.
A representative from Kansans for Life and the new owner of the medical clinic are expected to address the commission.
A Wichita clinic formerly operated by slain abortion provider Dr. George Tiller is expected to reopen soon.
Dr. George Tiller’s former building was recently purchased by an organization called Trust Women Foundation. It’s headed by Julie Burkhart, who used to run Tiller’s political action committee.
Abortion services have been unavailable in Wichita since Tiller was gunned down in 2009. Burkhart says each year, women in the Wichita area have to travel to Kansas City or to Oklahoma to get an abortion.