Logourl black
From our private database of 14,100+ case briefs...

Vance v. Universal Amusement Co.

United States Supreme Court
445 U.S. 308 (1980)


Facts

King Arts Theatre, Inc. (King) (plaintiff), owned an adults-only movie theater in Texas. King’s lease was terminated, because the county attorney intended to obtain an injunction and declare King a public nuisance for showing obscene motion pictures. Under a Texas statute, the distribution of obscene material was considered to be a public nuisance and could be enjoined by the state or a private citizen. After a lawsuit was filed, the trial judge could enter an ex parte temporary restraining order for up to 10 days. If the plaintiff could show that there was probable success on the merits, the trial judge could extend the temporary restraining order by granting a temporary injunction. A final determination of whether the material was obscene was not required for the temporary injunction. After a temporary injunction was granted, the case would be tried as any other civil case, and there was no provision to expedite a final adjudication of the obscenity issue. King filed suit in district court, seeking an injunction against action by the county attorney (defendant). The district court held that the Texas statute was a prior restraint on free speech in violation of the First Amendment. The court of appeals reversed and upheld the statute as applied to the exhibition of motion pictures, reasoning that a temporary injunction could only be granted after an initial determination of obscenity and was therefore not a prior restraint on speech, as obscene materials are not constitutionally protected. The court of appeals reversed again upon a rehearing, and the state appealed.

Rule of Law

The rule of law is the black letter law upon which the court rested its decision.

To access this section, please start your free trial or log in.

Issue

The issue section includes the dispositive legal issue in the case phrased as a question.

To access this section, please start your free trial or log in.

Holding and Reasoning (Per curiam)

The holding and reasoning section includes:

  • A "yes" or "no" answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

To access this section, please start your free trial or log in.

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 217,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 14,100 briefs, keyed to 189 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.