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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in unconstitutional

Federal Appellate Court Refuses To Find Florida’s Drug Statute Unconstitutional

On August 24, 2012, the United States Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals reversed the Federal District Court that had found Florida’s drug statute unconstitutional in the case of Mackle Shelton vs State of Florida.   The Federal Circuit Court of Appeals did not actually decide the constitutional issue presented, finding instead that consideration of the defendant’s question of law was procedurally barred under the provisions of the Anti-terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA) of 1996.  The lower court that was reversed had found that the Florida drug statute’s failure to require proof of knowing possession of contraband violated due process of law.

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In Sharply Worded Dissent, Florida Justice Perry Criticizes Majority Drug Law Ruling

In a sharply worded dissent in the case of State v. Luke Jarrod Adkins, Florida Supreme Court Justice James E.C. Perry criticizes the majority of the Court  and refers to their opinion as being built on a foundation of flawed “common sense” which shatters bedrock constitutional principles.

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Florida Supreme Court Upholds State Drug Laws

The Florida Supreme Court has ruled, in an opinion dated July 12, 2012, that Florida drug laws are constitutional, rejecting arguments that the drug statute’s failure to require proof of knowing possession violates due process of law.  In the case of State of Florida v Luke Jarrod Adkins, a five justice majority concluded that, “Given the broad authority of the legislative branch to define elements of crimes, the requirements of due process ordinarily do not preclude the creation of offenses which lack a guilty knowledge element.”

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U.S. Supreme Court Unanimously Backs Privacy Rights In GPS Tracking Case

In a rare unanimous decision, the United States Supreme Court ruled on January 23, 2012, in U.S. v Antoine Jones,  that attaching a GPS device to a suspect’s vehicle is a search under the Fourth Amendment.   In one of the first major cases to test constitutional privacy rights in the digital age, the court ruled that police must obtain a search warrant before attaching a GPS tracker to a vehicle in a criminal investigation.

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Jan 9, 1979, Supreme Court Strikes Law Requiring Abortion Doctors Preserve Fetus' Life - Today In Crime History

On this date, January 9, in the year 1979, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a Pennsylvania law that subjected abortion providers to criminal sanctions if they failed to attempt to preserve the life of a fetus when there is "sufficient reason to believe that the fetus may be viable" or when the fetus “is viable.”

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Florida Supreme Court Hears Oral Argument On Constitutionality Of Drug Law

The Florida Supreme Court heard oral argument on Tuesday, December 6, 2011, regarding the constitutionality of Florida’s drug laws as raised in the criminal case of Luke Jarrod Adkins et al v. Florida.  An assistant public defendant and assistant attorney general were questioned by the Florida Supreme Court Justice’s about their legal positions.  The Florida Supreme Court has not issued a ruling on the issue raised in the appeal and does not have a specific timetable for issuing a written order in the case.

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Florida Supreme Court Accepts Jurisdiction In Drug Law Constitutionality Cases

The Florida Supreme Court has accepted jurisdiction to decide the constitutionality of Florida’s drug statutes pursuant to the request of Florida’s Second District Court of Appeal.  Meanwhile, in another case, Florida’s First District Court of Appeal upheld the constitutionality of Florida’s drug law.

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District Court of Appeal Requests Florida Supreme Court Decide Constitutionality Of Drug Law Quickly

In an opinion dated September 28, 2011, a Florida District Court of Appeal has certified that an appeal from a recent ruling finding Florida’s primary drug prossession statute unconstitutional involves an issue of great public importance that requires immediate resolution by the Florida Supreme Court.  The appellate court’s certification is essentially a request that Florida’s highest court resolve issues recently raised about the constitutionality of Florida's drug statute as quickly as possible. The appellate court’s certification was entered as prosecutors in Manatee County Florida appealed Circuit Court Judge Scott Brownell’s dismissal of drug charges against forty-two defendants to the Second District Court of Appeal.  Judge Brownell’s recent order finding Florida’s drug statute unconstitutional, as well as other similar recent court rulings, have been discussed previously in this blog and can be found here.

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Noise Statute Unconstitutional

On September 16th the Fifth District Court of Appeals declared Florida Statute 316.3045 (1 ) ( a ) unconstitutionally overbroad and found that it restricted the right of free expression. This ruling was consistent with a prior ruling of the Second District Court of Appeals from May of this year in a case styled as State of Florida v. Catalano 60 So. 3d 1139 ( Fla. 2nd DCA , 2011).

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Two Florida Circuit Court Judges Rule Drug Law Unconstitutional

Following the lead of U.S. District Court Judge Mary Scriven, who found on July 27, 2011 that the provisions of Florida Statute 893.13 violated fundamental rights of due process (read the Shelton order here), two State of Florida Circuit Court Judges have now also ruled that Florida’s primary drug prohibition statute is unconstitutional.   On August 17, 2011, Judge Milton Hirsch of the State of Florida’s Eleventh Judicial Circuit dismissed thirty-nine felony drug cases finding Florida Statute 893.13 violates due process and is unconstitutional.   Read the Hirsch order here.  Similarly, on September 14, 2011, Judge Scott Brownell of the State of Florida’s Twelfth Judicial Circuit, dismissed forty-two felony drug cases, finding that Florida Statute 893.13 is unconstitutional.  Read the Brownell order here.

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Florida Court Declares Loud Stereo Statute Unconstitutional

In May 2011, the Second District Court of Appeals ruled that the Florida Statute which makes it unlawful to have your car stereo plainly audible at a distance of 25 feet or more from the motor vehicle is unconstitutional. The Court stated that the term “plainly audible” is too vague and invites arbitrary enforcement. Additionally, the Court stated that this statute was a restriction on free speech.

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Judge Declares Florida Drug Law Unconstitutional

Today U.S. District Judge Mary Scriven declared Florida’s controlled substances law unconstitutional.

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