LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A federal judge is allowing the Satanic Temple to join a lawsuit challenging a Ten Commandments monument installed near Arkansas’ state Capitol.
U.S. District Judge Kristine Baker on Monday granted the Satanic Temple’s request to intervene in the lawsuit seeking to remove the privately funded monument. A 2015 law required the state to allow its construction.
Opponents argue the government has unconstitutionally endorsed religion.
Arkansas lawmakers last year effectively blocked the Satanic Temple’s proposed competing statue of Baphomet, a goat-headed, winged creature, by enacting a measure that requires monuments have legislative sponsorship.
The Ten Commandments monument was reinstalled in April after the original version was destroyed by a man who crashed his car into it. He was acquitted in May. He also destroyed a Ten Commandments monument outside Oklahoma’s state Capitol.