NOT GUILTY Verdict In Homeless Feeding Trial

Where's the religious right on this one?

It's the first trial of its kind. A man is facing a judge and jury for violating Orlando's ban on feeding the homeless. Eric Montanez, 22, was caught feeding a group in Lake Eola Park earlier this year. The prosecution told Eyewitness News their case rests on video taken of Montanez feeding the homeless, breaking Orlando's feeding ban.

"There are a lot better things for law enforcement to be doing in this town, but this was an outrage," said George Crossley of the ACLU.

And the verdict is in. He's been found innocent:

In the first test of Orlando's controversial ban on feeding groups in public parks, a jury Tuesday found 22 year-old Eric Montanez not guilty of the misdemeanor charge against him. After the verdict, Orange County Judge Steve Jewett praised Montanez for the "important" volunteer work he does feeding the homeless at Lake Eola Park, but cautioned: "you do have to obey the law."


We welcome relevant, respectful comments. Any comments that are sexist or in any other way deemed hateful by our staff will be deleted and constitute grounds for a ban from posting on the site. Please refer to our Terms of Service (revised 3/17/2016) for information on our posting policy.