City of Springfield Files Response in Fulnecky Lawsuit

The City of Springfield has filed their response to the lawsuit filed by former City Councilwoman Kristi Fulnecky against the city’s masking ordinance.

The filings by City Attorney Rhonda Lewsader and Assistant City Attorney Christopher Hoeman outline a number of reasons why the court should deny a temporary restraining order and dismiss the actual suit.

In the city’s suggestions in opposition to the motion for a TRO, the city argues that any restraining order would “not preserve the status quo.” The lawyers refer to a ruling that says a TRO’s “are emergency measures, often issued ex parte, where there is a need to protect an applicant from immediate and irreparable injury which may result to the applicant before a formal contested hearing can be scheduled.” Because Rachel Shelton, the woman named as the plaintiff in the case, has said she has claustrophobia, she is thus exempt from the ordinance.

“Based on Plaintiff’s allegations she is not required to wear a face covering, a TRO is not necessary to preserve the status quo,” the city’s response states. 

The city also notes that the plaintiff is unlikely to succeed on the merits, noting Missouri Supreme Court and United States Supreme Court ruling that back communities taking actions for the benefit of public health.

In the motion to dismiss, the city notes that Shelton does not have standing to bring the case because she acknowledges that the law provides an exception to someone with a medical condition that would prohibit masking and she claims such a condition.

The city also claims that there is no proper Constitutional challenge in the suit, and that the Mayor and Council members have immunity from these kinds of suits.

Here are the city’s three filings in the case:




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