ROBERT CLARKSON,                     ) 
Plaintiff,                           )  C/A No. 88-CP-23-_______
V.                                   )
                                     )       COMPLAINT	
CITY OF GREENVILLE,                  )       (Non-jury) 
Defendant.                           )       
__________________________           ) 

The plaintiff, complaining of certain acts by the defendant, alleges as follows:


1. The plaintiff is a citizen and resident of the state of South Carolina , and county of Anderson .

2. The defendant is a municipality located in the piedmont region of the state of South Carolina .

3. All acts complained of occurred in Greenville , South Carolina and were committed by the defendant, by and through its agents while acting under color of state law.

4. The proper venue for this action is this Court based upon the residence of the defendant, the place of the incident, and upon the fact that the ordinance in question is a law applicable within the confines of the City of Greenville .

5. This Court's jurisdiction is invoked pursuant to the South Carolina Declaratory Judgments Act, & 15-53-10, et seq. as well as Rule 57, South Carolina Rules of Civil Procedure.

6. The plaintiff seeks a declaration that Greenville City Ordinance 33-56 of Article III, The Code of the City of Greenville, South Carolina is unconstitutional on its face.

7. The plaintiff seeks a remedy commensurate with the Court's finding.

8. On or about April 6, 1982, the plaintiff walked in the Coffee Street mall (an outdoor locations) carrying a sign, picketing.

9. Acting through its agents, the defendant arrested and detained the plaintiff, ostensibly in violation of The Code of the City of Greenville (hereinafter "City Code"), 33-56. The officers involved were Joe Jordan, Lt. Belue, and Captain WE Dees.

10. Section 33-56 of the City Code as applicable on April 6, 1982 and as applicable at the present time reads as follows:

It shall be unlawful for any person to organize or hold or participate in any parade, meeting, assembly or procession of persons, and/or vehicles on the streets or sidewalks of the city, unless such activity shall have first been authorized by a written permit therefor.

11. The plaintiff did not obtain a written permit from the defendant or from any agent of the defendant, prior to walking in Coffee Street Mall on April 6, 1982 with a sign, picketing.

12. The plaintiff was arrested, detained, handcuffed, prosecuted and convicted in his absence without notice for violation of 33-5 of the City Code for his walking with a sign, picketing, on Coffee Street Mall on April 6, 1982.

13. The arrest warrant affidavit in warrant number A-666971 reads as follows:

The accused, Robert Barnwell Clarkson, was observed at the Coffee Street Mall at Main Street , marching up and down the sidewalk, and was carrying large signs. The accused was advised that he must obtain a permit from City Hall or stop his protest march. The accused refused to obtain the permit and did refuse to stop the march. This offense in violation of City Code 33-56.

14. The plaintiff's case was subsequently dismissed by the defendant after the plaintiff won a new trial for having been tried in his absence without notification.

15. The plaintiff alleges that 33-56 is unconstitutional ion its face in that: it is overly broad in tis coverage and unduly restricts lawful and peaceable assembly protected by the state and feral constitutions, that it fails to adequately notify cit8zens of their potential violations of the law, it is susceptible of unequal enforcement by the police, it is vague, that certain phrases such as "any meeting" and "any assembly" are so overbroad and indefinite as to make criminal any meeting of persons on the City of Greenville's sidewalks without a permit.

16. The plaintiff seeks an order holding that said ordinance be stricken, in whole or in part, as being contrary to the First Amendment to the United States Constitution and/or Article I, Section 2 of the South Carolina Constitution which guarantee the rights to free speech and peaceable assembly.

17. The plaintiff further seeks an award of costs and attorney's fees for this cause.


18. The plaintiff re-alleges the contents of paragraphs 1 through 13, above.

19. The plaintiff seeks a declaration and finding by the Court that 33-5 of the City Code is unconstitutional as applied to his case.

20. The plaintiff, at the time of his arrest on April 6, 1892, was engaged in a peaceable assembly in that he was walking in the Coffee Street Mall area of downtown Greenville , South Carolina , carrying a sign, picketing.

21. That the plaintiff conducted himself at all times in a non-violent, non-abusive manner, aws not under the influence of alcohol or drugs, was not disturbing or drugs, was not disturbing the peace, was not disorderly and was in compliance with all other city, state and federal laws regarding his conduct in public.

22. At the time of his arrest for an alleged violation of 33-56 of the City Code, the plaintiff was not engaged in either a parade or a procession.

23. At the time of his arrest, the plaintiff was not on the streets of Greenville , was not blocking traffic, was not interfering with traffic and was otherwise conducting himself properly.

24. The plaintiff's acts of walking with a sign and picketing in the Coffee Street Mall area of downtown Greenville were protected conduct under the state and federal constitutions.

25. The defendant's requirement, set forth in 33-56, as interpreted by the defendant and its agents, that, prior to engaging in the conduct described above by the plaintiff on April 6, 1982 a person had to first obtain a permit from the defendant or its agents to engage in such activity, ins an unconstitutional limitation upon the plaintiff's rights to free speech and peaceable assembly.

26. The plaintiff seeks an order from this Court declaring that the city ordinance as applied in the plaintiff's case is unconstitutional.

27. The plaintiff further seeks an award of costs and attorney's fees.


28. The plaintiff realleges the contents of paragraphs 1, 2, 3,4,9,10,11,12 and 13, above.

29. The plaintiff seeks this Court's jurisdiction pursuant to 42 USC 1983 and 1988, as well as under state law.

30. On April 6, 1982, the plaintiff was arrested in public detained by city police officers, handcuffed, transported to the Greenville Law Enforcement Center , and jailed in violation of his state and federal constitutional rights to free speech and peaceable assembly.

31. At the time of his arrest, the plaintiff was walking peaceably in the area of Coffee Street Mall, located in Greenville , South Carolina .

32. At or about the time of his arrest, the plaintiff was carrying a sign, picketing.

33. The plaintiff was not on ay street or disrupting traffic at the time of his arrest or at any time while in the presence of the defendant's agents.

34. The plaintiff was arrested for picketing in the Coffee Street Mall area in violation of his state and federal constitutional rights.

35. The speech for which the plaintiff was arrested was a protest of the federal government, specifically the Internal Revenue Service.

36. The assembly for which the plaintiff was arrested was walking with a sign in the Coffee Street Mall area of downtown Greenville .

37. The defendant, through its agents, was acting under color of state law when they arrested the plaintiff.

38. The defendant, through its agents, was acting in accordance with a policy previously approved by a policy making body of the defendant and by others in the city government with regard to the plaintiff's arrest on April 6, 1982.

39. The arrest of the plaintiff was done in furtherance of the defendant's policy to violate the free speech rights and associational rights of the plaintiff.

40. The plaintiff's arrest was unlawful in that it was done in retaliation for the plaintiff's exercise of his constitutional rights.

41. The plaintiff had not violated any valid city, state or federal law when arrested.

42. As a direct result of the acts of the defendant and its agents, the plaintiff has suffered injuries for which he seeks damages, including embarrassment and humiliation associated with the arrest in public and his detention, arrest, handcuffing, stripping and loss of freedom, loss of self respect, and loss of freedom of movement, reputational harm, the loss of the right to protest government policies and conduct, out of pocket costs, etc.

43. The plaintiff seeks an award of costs and attorney's fees pursuant to 42 USC 1988.


44. The plaintiff realleges the contents of paragraphs 29 through 44, above.

45. On April 6, 1982, while acting under color of state law, without probably cause and based upon and erroneous policy, the defendant, through its agents, arrested the plaintiff in the area of Coffee Street Mall in downtown Greenville , South Carolina .

46. The plaintiff's arrest was made in violation of the plaintiff's right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures, a right guaranteed to him by the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and Article I, Section 10 of the South Carolina Constitution.

47. That, upon information and belief, the arrest of the plaintiff was done without a warrant.

48. Upon information and belief, the defendant arrested the plaintiff, by and through its agents, with the knowledge and reasonable belief that the plaintiff had not in fact violated any law.

49. The plaintiff, as a direct result of this unlawful arrest, suffered damages, including those set forth in paragraph 44, above.

50. The plaintiff seeks an award of costs and attorney's fees for this claim pursuant to 452 USC 1988.

WHEREFORE, the plaintiff prays for the following relief:

1. A trial on all contested issues of fact.

2. A declaration that Section 33-56 of the City Code is unconstitutional on its face and/or as applied in the plaintiff's case.

3. An award of damages in this third and four causes.

4. An award of costs and attorney's fees pursuant to 42 USC 1988 and state law.

5. Any further relief the Court deems appropriate under the circumstances of this case.

Respectfully submitted,
Attorney for the plaintiff
12 Lavinia Ave.
Greenville , SC 29601
(803) 271- 3563

Greenville , SC
April 4th, 1988



Summary of Authorities

                       DISTRICT OF _______________________

 _________________                   )
   PLAINTIFF                         )     CIVIL NO:_________________ 
      V.                             )     
 ____________________                )     SUMMARY OF AUTHORITIES IN
 _____________________               ) 
   DEFENDANTS                        )

Plaintiff, above-named, submits to the court his Summary of Authorities to support his Motion for attorney fees in connection with this case:

  1. The Freedom of Information Act specifically provides in sub-paragraph 5 USC 552 (a)(4)(E):
    The court may assess against the United States reasonable attorney fees and other litigation costs reasonably incurred in any case under this section in which the complianant has substantionally prevailed. The Privacy Act provides likewise in section 5 USC 552a (g)(2)(B).
  2. Even though Plaintiff brought this action as attorney pro se, he is entitled to be compensated for his time and costs. As in Holly vs. Acree 72 FRD 115 (1976); "The Court cannot agree with the goverenment's interpretation of the attorney fees provision" of the FOIA-PA, "that awards may only be made to members of the Bar." "First, the wording of the provision" leads the court to "conclude therefore that attorney fees need not actually be incurred to be within the limit of the provision."
    Further, the Court in Holly ruled:
    "Secondly, the policy of the Act is better served by such an interpretation than that sought by the government. Barriers are removed and persons are encouraged to vindicate their FOIA rights more by permitting them to recover fees for the time spent in the role of their own attorneys than by confining such awards to members of the bar. Moreover, when persons exercise their right to represent themselves before the bar of justice they are in every sense functioning as attorneys: they do research, file pleadings, and advocate their cause.
    It has been recognized that lawyers on the staffs of organizations may nevertheless be compensated under the Act at the fair market value of their services, National Treasury Employees Union v. Nixon, 172 US App. DC 217, 521 F 2d 317 (1975), and no rational ground exists upon which to distinguish awards to such persons, who are functioning in an essentially pro se role, from persons such as plaintiff who also funtion in the role of attorney on their own behalves, merely because one happens to be a member of the bar and the other does not. Such a distingtion would be arbitrary and would erect a barrier to the vindication of FOIA rights, contrary to the intent of Congress."
  3. The leading case in the area of FOIA-PA attorney's fees, Nationwide Maintenance Inc. vs. Sampson 559 Fed 704 (DC 1977) provides that with respect to the petition of attorney fees, particular consideration should be given to the reasonableness of the government's exemption claims, commercial benefit to the Plaintiff and any general public benefit resulting from disclosures of the documents actually obtained. In Plaintiff's case, there is obviously no commercial benefit, the government's denial was totally unreasonable, as an examination of the document's release will clearly show and the public will always benefit from the exposure of wrongdoing of federal agencies as illegal political surveillance programs.
  4. In Nationwide, the Court noted that the government's only citation denied attorney's fees was Vermont Low Income vs. Dunlap, 71 FRD 343, which turned on a factual determination that the government had made a good faith effort to furnish the documents and Plaintiff could not show that its suit was necessary, or "had a substantially causative effect on delivery of the information" and whether Plaintiff could have avoided court action. However, in this case, no similar circumstances exist - the IRS simply refused to obey the law, Plaintiff allowed Defendants ample time to furnish the documents, etc.
  5. The attorney's fee section, according to the D.C. Circuit in Nationwide, provides:
    "Like the other provisions added to the FOIA by the 1974 amendments, grew out of a general dissatisfaction with the administrative rseponse to the policy of open government embodied in the Act. Extensive oversight hearings held in 1971 and 1972 brought to light substantial "footdragging' on the part of administrative officials who invoked every conceivable delaying technique and forced citizens requesting information under the FOIA to resort to expensive litigation for vidication of their satutory rights. Several witnesses suggested either finacial penalties for inordinate delay in responding to a FOIA request or the award of Attorney fees to successful FOIA Plaintiffs. The House Committee on Government Operations subnsequently recommended that strict deadlines be set for administrative response to FOIA resquests and that attorney fees be awarded where a court found that information had been wrongfully withheld."
  6. "Our examination of the legislative history pursuades us that in the case of the Nationwide court, the purpose of the attorney's fees provision was:
  7. "To remove the incentive for administrative resistance to disclosure requests based not on the merits of exemption claims, but on the knowledge that many FOIA Plaintiffs do not have the financial resources or economic incentives to pursue their requests through expensive litigation."

    The service, having access to Plaintiff's and others' tax forms and financial information has unique ability, as in this case, to assess a requestor's ability to finance a law suit and deny access to records. Therefore, pro se attorney's fees are warranted.

  8. Plaintiff has clearly rendered a public service as a private attorney general vindicating the polices of the FOIA, which as congress intended, relies on private suits for enforcement.He needs the attorney's fees as the benefits of disclosure in this case, as the Nationwide Court held, will almost always be insufficient to overcome the economic disincentives to seek judicial review.
  9. However, in most FOIA-PA cases, after the suit is filed, the government suddenly discovered that many documents previously withheld are not exempt - and Defendants released them.

    In a typical case, Goldstein vs. Levy, 915 F Supp 303 (1976), Counsel for the Plaintiff who brought action under the Freedom of Information Act moved for an award of attorney fees. The District Court, Parker, J., held that an award of attorney fees was proper even though the dispute was resolved at a very early state; and that an award of $50 per hour for 18 hours of legal services was reasonable.
  10. The purpose of the provision for counsel fees was to encourage private citizens to bring to the attention of the courts any unlawful withholding of information by government agencies. Clearly, this purpose would be defeated and frustrated if plaintiffs were forced to forfeit their claim upon surrender of the material before formal action by the judge.
  11. The Nationwide Court ruled in this area thusly:
    "a court judgment is not a prerequisite for attorney fees awards under the FOIA. The legislative history clearly indicates that Congress did not intend to require a court judgment as a prerequisite for award of attorney fees."
    Also, numerous cases have concluded that a FOIA Plaintiff is not absolutely barred from an award of attorney fees because the government acts to moot his claim before judgment.
  12. The Nationwide court quoted CPUS vs. DOJ #75-1700 (DC 1975):
  13. If the government could avoid liability for fees merely by conceding the cases before final judgment, the impact of the fee provision would be greatly reduced. The government would remain free to assert boilerplate defenses, and private parties who served the public interest by enforcing the Act's mandates would be deprived of compensation for the undertaking. Thus, a general ban of attorney's fees in cases resolved before final judgment cannot be accepted by the courts.

  Date:______________________              ________________________
                                           Plaintiff pro se

  CERTIFICATE OF SERVICE: I hereby certify that on or about this date 
  I mailed or sent properly a copy of this pleading to opposing counsel.

  Date and place abovementioned:           ________________________
  ______________________________           Plaintiff pro se