By MICHAEL CASEY, Associated Press


(AP) – New Hampshire’s highest court has upheld the conviction of three women arrested for going topless on a New Hampshire beach.

In a 3-2 ruling Friday, the court found Laconia’s ordinance does not discriminate on the basis of gender or violate the women’s right to free speech.

In a dissenting opinion, two judges argued the ordinance was unconstitutional because it treats men and women differently.

Heidi Lilley, Kia Sinclair and Ginger Pierro are part of the Free the Nipple campaign. They were arrested in 2016 after removing their tops at a beach in Laconia and refusing to put them on when beachgoers complained.

The women argued this was a form of gender-based discrimination because men don’t have to follow the same rules. The law’s supporters argue it helps prevent public disturbances.

(© Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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