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AZ: U.S. judge knocks down Arizona’s child-molestation law, orders ex-teacher released

A U.S. District Court judge in Phoenix has found unconstitutional an Arizona law defining child molestation, and he ordered that a man who already has spent a decade in custody be released.

In 2007, a Maricopa County jury found ____ ____guilty of five counts of molestation of a child and acquitted him of two other counts. An eighth count was dismissed by prosecutors.

____ was a former schoolteacher and swim instructor, and the charges came from allegations that he touched children inappropriately while giving them swim lessons. ____denied there was any sexual intent on his part.

But the law was written in such a way that intent was not required as an element of guilt. Full Article

Join the discussion

  1. Quint

    California’s law 647.6, child molestation, is written the same way.

  2. Michael

    “You write into the law that we have to prove sexual motivation and now you have created a burden that currently does not exist in Arizona law.”

    The due process clauses of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments ”[protect] the accused against conviction except upon proof beyond a reasonable doubt of every fact necessary to constitute the crime with which he is charged.” In Jackson v. Virginia, the court held that convictions must satisfy themselves whether the record evidence could reasonably support a finding of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Seemingly the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office wants to skip over the part where one is considered innocence until proven guilty by a jury of his peers, and just lock people up.


  3. David

    I would hate to be a TSA agent in AZ airport.
    Charges pending?

    (BTW, does anyone recall when we last had a 13 year old terrorist here in the U.S.? Yeah, me neither.)

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