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Thursday, July 02, 2015

Ind. Courts - "Sex offenders in Allen/Elkhart challenging state restriction on where they can attend church" [Updated]

Here is a copy of the complaint in John Doe 1, John Doe 2, et al., v. The Allen and Elkhart County Prosecutors, and the Sheriffs of Allen and Elkhart County, et al..

From the complaint:

Indiana Code § 35-42-4-14 (eff. July 1, 2015) provides that certain sex offenders, defined by the statute as “serious sex offenders,” are prohibited from entering school property. This statute has a number of serious effects, not the least of which is to ban these persons from going to worship in churches, synagogues, mosques, or other religious buildings that are located on the same as property parochial schools or certain preschool programming. Banning sex offenders from, for example, church on Sunday, because there are students in a school on the same grounds on Monday, is irrational and violates the due process of law protected by the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. It also violates Indiana’s newly enacted Religious Freedom Restoration Act, Indiana Code § 34-13-9-0.7, et seq. (eff. July 1, 2015), which prohibits government from imposing a substantial burden on a person’s exercise of religion absent a compelling governmental interest and a showing that the action is the least restrictive means to further that interest. * * *

Legal claims

57. Indiana Code § 35-42-4-14 violates RFRA, Indiana Code § 34-13-9-0.7, et seq., because it substantially burdens the exercise of religion without a properly tailored justification.

58. Indiana Code § 35-42-4-14 is fundamentally irrational and arbitrary in violation of the due process clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

ILB: IC 35-42-4-14 is headed "Unlawful entry of school property by a serious sex offender" and is on the last page of this copy of IC 35-42-4.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on July 2, 2015 11:36 AM
Posted to Indiana Courts