Trial to begin in 'crippled' comedian case

CINCINNATI (AP) - A trial is set to begin for a man who says he was charged after using the word "crippled" to promote a comedian with muscular dystrophy.

Jury selection begins Monday in the Cincinnati trial of 25-year-old Forest Thomer, of Cold Spring, Ky. He was charged in May after asking people in a park if they wanted to laugh at his crippled friend Ally Bruener.

They were promoting the comedy show and website of the Alexandria, Ky., woman who is in a wheelchair. She says she uses humor to try to remove stigma from the word "crippled."

Authorities say Thomer was arrested because he was too loud and disorderly. He says his free speech rights are being violated.

Thomer could receive up to 30 days in jail if convicted.

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