News

Peoria Mayor Sued Over Response to Twitter Account

Peoria Mayor Sued Over Response to Twitter Account

Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis Photo: Associated Press/M. Spencer Green

The mayor of Peoria says he’s the one who was wronged – when someone set up a @peoriamayor Twitter account.

Jim Ardis says Jon Daniel stole his identity when Daniel started a Twitter account – using Ardis’ photo – depicting the city’s three-term leader as a foul-mouthed, drug-crazed sex fiend. He says it would have helped if Daniel would have labeled the account as parody.

Ardis had police seize Daniel’s computers, and Twitter shut down the account. Daniel was detained but not arrested.

The American Civil Liberties Union is on the case. The Illinois branch’s legal director, Harvey Grossman, says while the tweets were crude, they are protected speech, and nobody would believe the real Ardis would conduct himself in such a manner.

“Your city fathers need a lesson,” Grossman told a Peoria news conference. “They need to be instructed by a federal judge that what they did was wrong.”

Daniel says he is no more than “a man with a smartphone, a Twitter account, and a sense of humor” and that the city was wrong to use its resources against him.

“It did not just violate the Constitution,” Grossman adds. “It defied common sense.”

The mayor says he saw the account as a discredit to himself and a threat upon his family. He voiced displeasure that the media has not given his side of the story more weight.

Ardis also challenged any reporter who sees the tweets as “harmless parody” to publish or broadcast them.

 

Recent Headlines

2 hours ago in Local

A Hand Up for Minority Business

Fresh
local_news_generic

ADME program

2 hours ago in Local

Memorial, St John’s Owed $76M

medical

State budget impasse is to blame

2 hours ago in Local

Opposition Mounts against Dunkin

ken dunkin

Republicans would welcome him

2 hours ago in Local

“Four Tops” Meet This Week

state_capitol_3

Rauner promises, but won't specify, compromises

1 day ago in Local

Chicago Officer Sues Estate of Teen He Shot, Claiming Trauma

wtax 011015

A white Chicago police officer who fatally shot a black 19-year-old college student and accidently killed a neighbor has filed a lawsuit against the teenager's estate, arguing the shooting left him traumatized.