After a federal judge ruled that the county's laws against asking drivers for money are unconstitutional, a homeless man takes on the jurisdiction of St. Louis County and wins big. Six figures big. “It's legal to plead for money, just as it is to ask for money if you're running for office, supporting the church community, or the Elks Lodge,” attorney Hugh Eastwood said. “The ordinance and the police were punishing an unpopular speaker for his words, and they were standing there with a sign that said, ‘God Bless, Homeless, Everything Helps.'
Judge Stephen Limbaugh acknowledged in his decision that Fernandez has been cited 64 times and arrested four times in St. Louis County since 2017 for violating laws requiring a solicitor's license, prohibiting panhandling in traffic, and prohibiting vagrancy. All three rules, according to Limbaugh, violate the 1st and 14th amendment rights to free expression and due process.
After winning $150,000 from the country and over $130,000 to cover his legal fees, Robert Fernandez is back at the original intersection, calling for money after receiving the verdict. However, he has yet to obtain the winnings from the lawsuit.