Lawrence G. Walters

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Lawrence G. Walters is an American First Amendment attorney and anti-censorship advocate. He is the head of the Walters Law Group, focusing on First Amendment and Internet Law, and has served as an Adjunct Professor of Legal Studies at the University of Central Florida.

Early life and education[edit]

Walters grew up in Chicago and graduated from the University of Central Florida in 1985. He received his JD from Florida State University with honors.[1]

Legal career[edit]

Walters works in the field of free speech, and represents the interests of the online entertainment community, and began his career as an attorney in 1988.[2] He has defended website operators in high-profile obscenity cases.[3][4] In 1999, Walters defended Tammy Robinson in the first obscenity case based on website content.[5] Walters has defended Chris Wilson against more than 300 obscenity charges arising from his operation of a controversial website which included images from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The case represented the first obscenity prosecution against a website based on user generated content.[6]

In 2007, Walters defended Karen Fletcher,[7] who was charged with obscenity based on written stories published on her website in a case tested the boundaries of obscenity law.[8] In 2008, he was appointed President of the First Amendment Lawyers Association.[9] Walters also defended Clinton McCowen, where he introduced Google Trends evidence showing that online users were more interested in sexually explicit topics[10] than in generic terms like "apple pie"[11] or "watermelon." The case was settled shortly after Walters issues a subpoena to Google for supporting evidence.[12]

Walters is also known as an advocate for the free speech rights of protestors,[13] street performers,[14] and topless dancers.[15] For example, in 2006 he won an appellate court victory upholding the First Amendment right of a topless protestor in Daytona Beach, Florida.[16] Walters has also worked with the online gambling industry, representing against the Commonwealth of Kentucky in the state's efforts to seize[17] the domain based on alleged gambling violations. He has also represented Internet Cafes[18] in constitutional challenges[19] to local ordinances banning the use of simulated gambling devices.[20]

In 2009, Walters began representing teens accused of sex offenses based on sexting behavior[21][22][23][24][25][26] and advocating changes in states' laws relating to teen sexting.[27] Walters has also developed apps used by content producers to comply with federal age verification laws and enforce copyrights.[28]


  1. ^ Albert Craig Baird, Lester Thonssen, Waldo Warder Braden, Owen Peterson (2003). Representative American Speeches, Volume 75, Issue 6. H.W. Wilson Company. p. 117.CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  2. ^
  3. ^ [1] Top vote recipients of 2006 win peer approval (2006-11-20) Retrieved from on (2013-12-10)
  4. ^
  5. ^ [2]Couple fights community standards in online porn case (2000-09-05) Retrieved from on (2013-12-10)
  6. ^ [3]Couple fights community standards in online porn case (2000-09-05) Retrieved from on (2014-01-03)
  7. ^ [4] Pittsburgh City Paper (2007-05-10) Retrieved from on (2013-12-10)
  8. ^ [5] New York Times (2007-09-28) Retrieved from on (2013-12-10)
  9. ^
  10. ^ [6]Defense Files New Petition in Ray Guhn Case (2007-11-21) Retrieved from on (2013-12-10)
  11. ^ [7]Citing Google, pornographer claims orgies are bigger than apple pie (2008-06-24) Retrieved from on (2014-01-03)
  12. ^ [8]Obscenity trial? (2008-07-07) Retrieved from on (2014-01-03)
  13. ^ [9]The 'Naked' Truth! Protestor Wins Court Victory (2006-10-23) Retrieved from on (2014-01-02)
  14. ^ [10]Street performers, ACLU team up (2000-09-10) Retrieved from on (2014-01-02)
  15. ^ [11]Dancers rally vs. adult club bill (2003-06-23) Retrieved from on (2014-01-02)
  16. ^ [12]Appeals court upholds woman's right to protest while topless (2006-10-12) Retrieved from on (2014-01-03)
  17. ^ [13] Judge Wingate's Decision on Internet Gambling Domains is All Symbolic Now (2012-03-08) Retrieved from on (2013-12-10)
  18. ^ [14]Internet cafes take a gamble (2012-08-01) Retrieved from on (2014-01-03)
  19. ^ [15]Suit seeks halt to Hillsborough crackdown on Internet sweepstakes cafes (2011-12-11) Retrieved from on (2014-01-03)
  20. ^ [16]Internet cafés still running in Seminole despite ruling supporting ban (2012-04-12)Retrieved from on (2014-01-03)
  21. '^ [17]Sexting' teenagers face child-porn charges(2009-03-08) Retrieved from on (2014-01-03)
  22. ^ [18] 'Sexting' lands teen on sex offender list (2009-04-08) Retrieved from on (2013-12-10)
  23. ^ [19]Nightline discusses sexting laws with Attorney Lawrence Walters (2010-04-21) Retrieved from Youtube on (2013-12-10)
  24. ^ [20]MTV Asks (2010-03-09) Retrieved from Youtube on (2013-12-10)
  25. ^ [21]Lawrence Walters discusses Sexting Retrieved from on (2013-12-10)
  26. ^ [22]Sexting Discussed on The View (2010-03-09) Retrieved from Youtube on (2013-12-10)
  27. ^ [23]Lawrence Walters Comments on Florida Sexting Law (2012-01-26) Retrieved from Youtube on (2013-12-10)
  28. ^

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]