New Jersey judge cites free speech in clearing bear hunt activist

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MOUNT OLIVE -

(AP) - A judge is citing free speech rights for finding a New Jersey woman not guilty of harassment charges stemming from a social media post about the death of a bear that frequented her neighborhood.

Michael Bush and Nickey Pisco had filed complaints after Susan Kehoe posted on Facebook in October that she believed one of them killed the bear she nicknamed "Pretty Mama."

Bush says he received death threats and negative business due to the post.

The judge ruled Monday that while he found harassment, he couldn't find Kehoe guilty due to free speech rights.

Kehoe's attorney says the ruling shows "the First Amendment matters."

Bush says he wasn't pleased with the outcome and will file more charges against Kehoe if any future issues occur.

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