ACLU drops lawsuit after Boone County Jail adopts halal diet for Muslim inmates

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BOONE COUNTY, Ind. — A central Indiana jail that was sued by a Muslim inmate now is providing a diet that follows Islamic dietary laws.

The Boone County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday its jail has adopted a halal meal plan for Muslim inmates. The development came days after a federal judge granted the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana’s request to drop a lawsuit it filed in August.

The ACLU had accused the jail of violating the First Amendment rights of inmate Gannon Thomas and his rights under Indiana’s Religious Freedom and Restoration Act. The law signed by Gov. Mike Pence last year states government entities cannot pose a substantial burden to a person’s exercise of religion.

The 27-year-old Thomas objected to being served pork and other meat not slaughtered according to Islamic laws.