Vincent Squire, the Camden County Freeholder candidate disavowed by his own party, is at it again.
In his latest move to silence his detractors Squire is attempting to shut down a blog that has reported factual information about him and filed criminal charges against the blogger, Mike Astringer.
The Positively Pennsauken News Blog, operated by Astringer, a Pennsauken resident, has been reporting on various local issues including the Pennsauken Township Committee and Camden County Freeholder races. The Positively Pennsauken blog has reported on, among other things, Squire being disavowed by the CCGOP, Squire’s criminal record, pending Felony charges, his campaign platform and his family home being in foreclosure and owing over one million dollars in fines and penalties to Pennsauken Township. The blog’s sources have included documents obtained through OPRA requests, transcripts from the NJ Courts website and Squire’s own videos.
This is not the first time Squire tried to silence the Positively Pennsauken blog. Earlier this year Squire served the Blogger with a fake $10 million lawsuit claiming defamation and as you see in this video threatened the Blogger for attempting to interview him.
Federal courts have ruled that bloggers have the same Constitutional rights as Journalists. In 2014 The Ninth Circuit Federal Court ruled in Obsidian Finance Group v. Crystal Cox that even though someone might not write for the “institutional press,” they’re entitled to all the protections the Constitution grants journalists.
On Monday October 15, 2018 Squire filed three criminal charges against the blogger claiming harassment and reckless endangerment. Two of the charges he filed are Felonies. On Tuesday October 16, 2018 Squire had to appear before a Judge in Pennsauken at a Show Cause Hearing. The Judge dismissed the most serious charges and allowed a Harassment charge to move forward.
As you see in the following video Squire was obviously dissatisfied with the Judge’s decision and says he is appealing. We’re not sure who is giving Squire legal advice but NJ offers no mechanism to appeal a Judge’s decision in a show-cause hearing. In the video Squire also claims that Astringer was “found guilty”. This was not a trial but a show-cause hearing to determine if the charges move forward. Squire closes the video by saying “We are also filing a cease and desist order from your rag, I mean your blog so Mr. Astringer we’re shutting you down”.
Squire is a public figure running for political office. The Positively Pennsauken Blog has every right to report on him as long as the information is factual. Squire is obviously desperate to keep information about him from surfacing and has now gone so far as to file criminal charges against the Blogger and attempt an injunction to get the blog shut down. This is grandstanding on Squire’s part. There is nothing he can do about a Blogger reporting factual information on him.