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					  The Legal Project on behalf of ‘Zombie Mohammed’ calls for Judge Mark Martin to be
         removed from Bench for his Violation of First Amendment Protections

September 10, 2012

PHILADELPHIA, September 10, 2012 – The Legal Project (LP), an activity of the Middle East
Forum, today filed a formal request with the Pennsylvania Judicial Conduct Board for an
investigation into the judicial misconduct of Cumberland County Magisterial District Judge
Mark W. Martin. The LP filed in the matter of Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Talaag
Elbayomy on behalf of Ernest Perce V, the victim of Talaag Elbayomy’s harassment during a
Halloween parade in Mechanicsburg on October 11, 2011 where Mr. Perce was dressed in a
‘Zombie Mohammed’ costume.

On December 6, 2011 Judge Martin dismissed the harassment charges against Talaag Elbayomy.
Judge Martin’s ruling received national attention when the trial transcript showed Martin called
Mr. Perce a “doofus” and incorrectly described first amendment jurisprudence as not protecting
Mr. Perce’s free speech because, as he said, “our forefathers intended to use the First
Amendment so we can speak with our mind, not to p—off other people and cultures—which is
what you did.” He also put a special emphasis on Talaag Elbayomy’s Islamic faith and anti-
blasphemy Sharia laws as a rationale for Elbayomy’s physical assault on Mr. Perce. In a March
4, 2012 interview Judge Martin even admitted to using his bench to “educate the victim to try to
help him understand a little bit about Islam.” However, the arresting officer Police Sgt. Brian
Curtis disagreed, and continues to disagree with Judge Martin, standing by his arrest of Talaag
Elbayomy on harassment charges, stating “I believe that I brought a case that showed proof
beyond reasonable doubt, and the case was dismissed, and I was disappointed."

While the Pennsylvania Judicial Conduct Board (Board) has privately rebuked Judge Martin for
his ruling, The Legal Project’s filing with the Board is the only complaint filed on behalf of the
victim Mr. Perce. The Legal Project also has called for the Board to re-examine this matter and
remove Judge Martin from the bench.

“Judge Martin’s ruling was an egregious assault on the First Amendment of the United States
Constitution. He used his bench as a bully pulpit to enforce Islamic anti-blasphemy laws, show
special deference to a defendant because he is Muslim, and allow a crime to be perpetrated
because he didn’t agree with the victim’s Constitutionally protected speech,” said Sam Nunberg,
Director of The Legal Project. “It fails credulity for the Board to allow Judge Martin to complete
his term, which does not expire until 2018.”

Nunberg added, “Judge Martin’s judicial misconduct is part of a larger and unfortunate trend to
bring Sharia law into our American court system. However it has never been enforced so clearly
by ignoring the First Amendment. It is imperative that a judge who makes these unconstitutional
rulings be removed.”
The Legal Project, as an activity of the Middle East Forum, works to protect the universal right in the West to freely
discuss Islam, radical Islam, terrorism, and terrorist funding. Our international client list includes journalists,
bloggers, authors and politicians.

For more information, contact Sam Nunberg at Nunberg@meforum.org

				
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