Judge Denies Emergency Injunction to Va. Man Challenging Gov’s Order Limiting Church Gatherings to 10 People

(The Roanoke Times) A Russell County judge ruled against a southwest Virginia man’s request to allow more than 10 people to gather in church for Easter.

Judge Michael Moore on Thursday denied retired teacher Larry Hughes’ appeal for a temporary injunction in a lawsuit filed earlier this week that claims executive orders from Gov. Ralph Northam limiting the number of people that can gather in one place infringes on his religious freedom. …

Northam’s executive orders 53 and 55 ban public and private gatherings of more than 10 people, specifically mentioning religious events both inside and outside. Hughes’ lawsuit claims that it’s unfair to effectively shut down religious gatherings but allow other businesses that have been deemed essential to stay open.

T. Shea Cook, Hughes’ lawyer, called Northam’s action a “dangerous precedent” in a phone interview Thursday after the hearing.

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