Judge weighs 'mental anguish' law opposed by cop-killer

Written by The Associated Press | Mar 30, 2015 12:50 PM

Photo by AP Photo/Matt Rourke

Maureen Faulkner, widow of slain Philadelphia police officer Daniel Faulkner, speaks beneath a new mural of him in this 2014 file photo. The mural is painted on the side of the police station Faulkner worked at in the Chinatown section of the Philadelphia. Daniel Faulkner was shot to death by Mumia Abu-Jamal on a downtown street in 1981.

(Harrisburg) -- A federal judge is considering the legality of a Pennsylvania law that is intended to protect crime victims but whose opponents including a convicted cop-killer say restricts free speech.

The law allows victims to seek injunctions against offenders who act in ways that perpetuate their mental anguish.

U.S. District Judge Christopher Conner said at a hearing in Harrisburg that his decision will completely wrap up the matter and clear the way for the losing side to appeal.

The state law enacted in October was drafted after Mumia Abu-Jamal, serving life for the killing of a Philadelphia officer, made a recorded commencement address to a Vermont college.

Abu-Jamal and others are suing the state attorney general to overturn the law. Conner didn't indicate when he will issue his opinion.

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