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NJ woman sues over "8theist" plate

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NEWARK, N.J. (AP) -- A New Jersey woman has filed a lawsuit against the state's Motor Vehicle Commission, claiming the agency rejected her application for a license plate proclaiming she's an Atheist.

Shannon Morgan filed the suit Thursday in federal court, saying the rejection of a plate reading "8THEIST" is a violation of her First Amendment rights.

The Maurice River Township woman claims plates reading "BAPTIST" have been approved.

Messages and emails left for the Motor Vehicles Commission were not immediately returned. A recorded message said the offices were closed in observance of Good Friday.

New Jersey previously approved a request from a national atheist group's president for a license plate with the word atheist after a brief flap.

Morgan is being represented by the group Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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