and Video Courtesy of
May 27, 2008
Fla. -- A Central Florida war veteran
faces a lawsuit for flying the American flag in his front yard.
"I don't understand why it would bring down the values of our homes by flying the American flag from a pole in my front yard," homeowner Jimmie Watkins said.
Watkins and his wife, Ria, received a final
notices from the Sussex homeowners' association in Clermont that
they must remove the flag or else face legal action.
The former retired U.S. Navy communications
officer said he refuses to back down for the American flag.
"Our people are serving today to give us
freedom," Watkins said. "To do as we like here within the
law of America. It is my right to fly my flag from my pole and until
a court of law tells me to haul that down.
will not haul it down. I think about all of the people who have
served our nation and all of the lives that it's costs and all of
the friends that I've lost."
Local 6 reported that all surrounding
subdivisions in Kings Ridge allow a flag pole display in a person's
Jim Hart, who handles property management for
1,500 properties, including Sussex, said it is the association's
call and not his.
"Each sub-association has its own set of
documents and they can differ," Hart said. "The rationale
for that only exists within the minds of the folks that are doing
it. I can't sit here and tell you why."
homeowner's association is not commenting about their rules. But
state law said anyone can display a flag in a "respectful
manner" as long as it is removable, Local 6 reported.