West Virginia lawyer sues delegate for violating free speech rights after Facebook block

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A West Virginia lawyer is suing a state delegate after he was blocked from the delegate's public Facebook page for "commenting in an adverse nature."

The Charleston Gazette-Mail reported Monday that Ritchie County lawyer Scott Windom is suing Republican Delegate Jason Harshbarger.

Windom says the Facebook block violates his right to free speech.

Windom said he was "interacting" with people on a post about the House's "co-tenancy" bill that became law last year.

The law allows natural gas and oil companies to drill on land with the consent of 75 percent of its owners. Harshbarger's financial disclosure statements say he and his wife receive oil and gas production royalties.

Harshbarger declined to comment to the newspaper, saying he hadn't heard about the lawsuit.

On Monday, his Facebook page was removed.