ACLU challenges warrant for pipeline protest Facebook data

BELLINGHAM, Wash. (AP) — The American Civil Liberties Union is challenging a sheriff’s search warrant in northwestern Washington that seeks private Facebook data as part of an investigation into a Dakota Access oil pipeline protest.

The ACLU in Seattle filed the motion Wednesday to quash the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office warrant for private messages and other data on the Bellingham #NoDAPL Coalition Facebook page.

The Bellingham Herald reports (https://goo.gl/D8WkBL ) the Feb. 11 demonstration led to a freeway backup after protesters stopped traffic on Interstate 5. The state patrol said the blockade led to a five-car rollover crash that injured one person. No arrests have been made.

The ACLU claims the warrant is overbroad and unconstitutional.

Whatcom County Sheriff Bill Elfo says their purpose is to seek electronic data that relates to chaotic, disruptive and criminal behavior.

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Information from: The Bellingham Herald, http://www.bellinghamherald.com