Henderson County man withdraws threat to sue over Christmas tree star

TYLER (TYLER MORNING TELEGRAPH) - An atheist has apparently changed his mind about his threat to sue Henderson County in an effort to get a sign displayed with a nativity scene on the courthouse lawn.

County Attorney Clint Davis said he received an email from Patrick Greene during the weekend indicating that Greene now does not plan to file a lawsuit.

Davis said last week that he received an earlier email indicating that Greene did intend to sue.

In the earlier email, Greene requested to have a sign erected near the nativity scene saying that a star that he and his wife contributed was given by two atheists.

The latest email cited threats as a consideration in Greene's reversing his position and dropping his lawsuit threat. The email, Davis said, noted that the word "evil" had been burned in the threads of the door mat of his apartment complex in San Antonio.

Greene could not be reached by the Tyler Morning Telegraph for comment.

Davis and county Judge Richard Sanders indicated earlier that it was unlikely that Greene's sign request would be granted since the county already had denied a request from the Freedom From Religion Foundation to place an anti-religion sign on the courthouse lawn during December.

No decision had been made at last report about whether to use the star that Greene and his wife sent, said Carol Morton of Keep Athens Beautiful, the organization that decorates the courthouse lawn during the holidays.

Greene said last March that he gave the star in appreciation for donations Christians in Henderson County sent to him to help with his medical expenses.

At that time, Greene said he had converted to Christianity, but later he reportedly returned to atheism.


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