The town of Cary is asking a federal judge to reconsider her decision that the town violated the First Amendment rights of a man who put up a sign in his yard.

David Bowden sued in 2009 when town officials tried to fine him for a sign in his yard that read "Screwed by the town of Cary" painted in neon orange. Bowden says his home was damaged by runoff that he blames on town road construction.

U.S. District Judge Louise Flanagan ruled in December the town's ordinance limiting signs on personal property violated Bowden's free speech rights.

Cary has paid $178,000 to defend the suit and has been ordered to pay $46,000 for Bowden's legal expenses.

If Flanagan refuses to change her ruling, Cary could appeal to the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va.