Complaint in Karras v. Gore
Dimitri Karras, owner of Ares Armor in Oceanside, sued San Diego County in October 2015. Sheriff’s officials deleted his combative comments and then banned him from posting anything further. Karras claimed it was a violation of his First Amendment rights because the Facebook page was run by a government entity. Because it was a government agency, the Facebook page was a public forum for all taxpayers. The county argued that commenters must follow rules — such as staying respectful and on topic — to post to the site, and that Karras’s posts were neither. The backlash over the lawsuit, as well as a flood of negative and sometimes obscene comments Karras’ supporters posted onto the Facebook page, prompted the Sheriff’s Department to remove the page permanently.