Jury in Ohio acquits wheelchair comic's promoter

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CINCINNATI (AP) — A jury has found a man not guilty of disorderly conduct after he asked people in a Cincinnati park if they wanted to laugh at a crippled girl.

Forest Thomer (TOH'-mer) of Cold Spring, Ky. said his acquittal was a victory for free speech.

Prosecutors focused their case to emphasize what they said was Thomer's "turbulent behavior," not his speech.

A Cincinnati jury on Thursday acquitted the 25-year-old Thomer. A message was left for the prosecutor.

Thomer was charged after asking people if they wanted to laugh at his friend Ally Bruener (BROO'-nur). They were promoting the Alexandria, Ky., woman's comedy show and website.

Bruener has muscular dystrophy and is in a wheelchair and says she uses humor to try to remove any stigma about people with disabilities.

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