A Florida Appellate court has struck down an unconstitutional state law in Florida that made it unlawful to wear military uniforms if you are not in the military. The court ruled that the law violated the first amendment.
In May 2007 Fernando Montas wore an Army uniform at the Orlando International Airport. He stood in an expedited security line for military and security personnel. TSA noticed his longer hair and arrested him under the Florida law, which makes it a misdemeanor to wore such a uniform.
The law makes exemptions for actors, military cadets and both Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts.
Montas claimed that the statute violated his First Amendment and due-process rights. He contended that he wore the uniform to express his support for members of his family who are in the military. A state trial court agreed with Montas and ruled that the statute violated his constitutional rights.
On Oct. 31, 2008, the appellate court affirmed the lower court decision, holding that the law was so overbroad that it “would criminalize a child wearing his parent’s Army boots or a person wearing an imitation military uniform for Halloween.”
For the opinion, click here.
The charges against Montas have been dropped.