Kentucky city considers mask ban in wake of violent protests


GEORGETOWN, Ky. (AP) – A Kentucky city is considering following the example of several others in banning masks in public places, following violent protests across the country.

The Lexington Herald-Leader reports the proposed Georgetown ordinance would prohibit anyone from wearing a mask, hood or a disguise that would hide a substantial portion of someone’s face. Exemptions would provide for masks for theatrical productions, sports equipment, motorcycle helmets, children under 16 or city-authorized Halloween events. The ordinance would not apply to clothing.

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Assistant Police Chief Robert Swanigan says the ordinance allows peaceful protest but prevents anonymity in the case of violence.

Councilwoman Karen Tingle-Sames expressed concern about freedom of speech infringement, but Hartley said the ordinance doesn’t hinder expression of opinion.

The ordinance faces a Sept. 25 council vote.

Lexington and Pikeville have similar ordinances.