Hutchins v. District of Columbia

338 U.S. App. D.C. 11, 188 F. 3d 531 (1999)

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Hutchins v. District of Columbia

United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
338 U.S. App. D.C. 11, 188 F. 3d 531 (1999)

Facts

The District of Columbia (defendant) enacted the Juvenile Curfew Act of 1995 in response to a rise in juvenile crime and victimization. The act prohibited children under the age of 16 from being in a public place without a parent or guardian during certain times. There were eight defenses to the prosecution of a juvenile, including the defense that the juvenile was exercising his or her First Amendment right to exercise of religion, freedom of speech, or freedom of assembly. Parents were prohibited from permitting their children to violate the curfew. Business operators and employees were prohibited from failing to notify the police if a juvenile refused to leave the premises. Penalties for violating the act included community service for juveniles and fines, parenting classes, and community service for parents. A group of juveniles, parents, and businesses (Hutchins) (plaintiffs) sued for an injunction against enforcement of the act. Hutchins also sought a finding that the act was void for vagueness and violated the juveniles’ Fifth Amendment due-process and equal-protection rights to freedom of movement, among other rights. The district court found that the right to freedom of movement was a fundamental right and that the act was therefore subject to strict scrutiny. The district court found that the act was not narrowly tailored to achieve the state’s compelling interests in protecting juveniles and preventing crime committed by juveniles. As a result, the district court granted summary judgment to Hutchins, enjoining enforcement of the curfew. The District of Columbia appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Silberman, J.)

Concurrence/Dissent (Rogers, J.)

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