Though the controversial Etobicoke outpost of Adamson BBQ has been permitted to operate for takeout and delivery for over a month now, proprietor Adam Skelly has been on an understandably short leash after he defied provincial lockdown orders to host maskless indoor and outdoor diners there for multiple days in a row back in November.
After the 33-year-old was arrested on the scene in front of hordes of supporters, he was eventually released on $50,000 bail and was given some very specific terms to abide by, including remaining at least 200 m from his restaurants and refraining from operating or directing any business except in accordance with the Reopening Ontario Act.
Another criterion was mandatory absentia from social media, which Skelly had been using to discuss the lockdown, advertise that he would be opening and update followers on the situation.
Now, he’s asking the courts to lift that particular condition.
His legal representation has asserted that keeping Skelly off social media is limiting his civil liberties such as freedom of speech and is an “unnecessary” move that should have never been made.
“There’s no danger in Mr. Skelly liking a photo of a relative after they have a baby and writing ‘congratulations on your little one,'” his lawyer told the Ontario Superior Court, per the Star.
“That doesn’t impose any harm to society. [But] he’s not allowed to do that, that’s illegal for Mr. Skelly.”
More than a staggering $330,000 was controversially crowdfunded for the restaurateur’s legal fees as he faces charges of obstructing a peace officer, mischief under $5,000, breaching the Trespass to Property Act and multiple orders under the Reopening Ontario Act.
It was also later discovered that he’d been operating the original location of his barbecue joint in Leaside without a business license since its inception four years ago, and had only been fined a few hundred dollars on a number of occasions for the offence.
We’ll find out if he’s allowed back on Instagram this Friday.