Man fined $1K for not removing Wounded Warrior flag

By Ashley Harding, General assignment reporter, aharding@wjxt.com
Published On: Jan 28 2014 04:46:50 PM EST
PALM COAST, Fla. -

Controversy is brewing between a Palm Coast man and his homeowners association after he said they told him to remove a flag from his own backyard or else pay a hefty fine. The flag is for the Wounded Warrior Project, an organization designed to help the nation's heroes.

Thomas Bagnoli lives in the Grand Haven community of Palm Coast, just a few miles from Palm Coast Parkway. Despite all of this, he said he's not budging.

Bagnoli said the hefty fine is $1,000 If that wasn't enough, he said he received another notice later on saying if he didn't take it down after two months, there would be a lien on his house.

The flag has been up for about a year, hanging underneath an American flag, and Bagnoli said he was told it's against the rules. But he said he doesn't care, the flag is staying put.

"I get angry. I really do. I don't understand why," he said. "They say, 'Sorry, you have to take it down.' I refuse to. Their punishment for me is a $100 per day fine for 10 days, with a maximum of $1,000.

Bagnoli said he's lived in the Grand Haven community for 13 years and up until now there haven't been any problems. He said the flag went up a year ago, so he's already met that $1,000 max.

In another notice, Bagnoli said he was told he could fly flags for the armed forces, as well as prisoner of war and missing in action flags, but not one for the Wounded Warrior Project.

That was a surprise for Bagnoli.

"They're the real heroes and all of the armed forces," he said. "This flag should be apart of the armed forces heroes. They make that American flag fly."

Bagnoli said he hasn't personally met anyone who's offended by the flag. He hopes to see a change but said either way he's made up his mind.

"They can do whatever they want. I'm doing what I want. I feel strongly about this," he said.

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