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LA: Lafayette case over Louisiana sex offender identification law could be heard by Supreme Court

Source: theadvocate.com 9/27/21

Louisiana attorneys may know this week whether the U.S. Supreme Court will review a case this term involving a state statute that compels people convicted of sex crimes to carry cards identifying them as sex offenders.

High court justices were culling through possible cases to review in the fall starting Monday morning, including one in which former 15th Judicial District Judge Patrick Michot Sr. ruled in 2019 in favor of Tazin A. Hill, formerly of Duson, a convicted sex offender who altered his state-issued identification card to remove the words “SEX OFFENDER,” written in orange, from his state issued ID.

Michot has since retired from the bench.

Hill’s initial crime — he pleaded guilty in 2010 to having sex with a 14-year-old girl while he was 32 — is not at issue. In 2013, he completed a mandated three years in state custody for the sex charge, carnal knowledge of a juvenile, to which he had entered a guilty plea.

But the state compels such sex offenders to carry cards or driver licenses that clearly ID them to others as sex offenders. In Louisiana, that can include showing the state-issued card not only to law enforcement officers but to others in transacting much of their daily business.

When Hill reported to the Lafayette Sheriff’s Office on Dec. 5, 2016 to update his ID card, deputies saw he had eliminated the words “sex offender” on the card and taped over the space. Penalties for defacing the card could have ranged from two to 10 years in prison with a fine of up to $1,000.

Michot agreed with Hill and his attorneys that the state ID card was not the “least restrictive way” to notify law enforcement officers that Hill is a sex offender. Then District Attorney Keith Stutes notified Attorney General Jeff Landry’s office of the district court outcome, and the Attorney General’s office pressed an appeal — unsuccessfully — to the state Supreme Court, which affirmed Michot’s ruling in late December. The AG’s office then appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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‘“Children die when recidivistic sex offenders hide their status,” the state says in court documents.”

Oh really? Any actual proof of that? So your run of the mill domestic abuse doesn’t cause harm and death enough to warrant them being out’ed like this? Might have helped the 3 women my alcoholic step-father went on to severely abuse after nearly beating my mother to death with a claw hammer.

Sweet!

This case won at the lower state level and upper state level. Now, it could go to the Supreme court. If the SCOTUS refuses to accept it, then it agrees with all the previous decisions. Should that happen, then this case now can become an arrow in Janice’s quiver in revisiting Smith v Doe, 2003 at the SCOTUS level.

Scoring the case: The three liberal justices would most likely vote to uphold the original decision, while Roberts, Alito, ACB, and Kavenaugh would vote to overturn based on their interpretation of state’s rights with regard to security over individual rights. That leaves Gorsuch, who is more libertarian (in extension, more constitutional) to switch to the liberal side, and finally leaves Thomas, who is the one I cannot even come close to predicting. So, in essence, the arguments will have to push the “least resistance” angle as succinctly as possible to win over Thomas (and Gorsuch, of course). Comparing it to the Packinham Internet case, though, it broods negative on our side, so we shall have to see what happens.

Everybody is wondering about which cases will get cert.

Last edited 10 months ago by webmaster

People forced to register can’t do normal things in life anyway so whats the point of even having A government issue ID card, the government doesn’t even acknowledge me as A normal person in Society and has isolated me from the world.
People forced to register are still holding onto the life they use to have before the registry, like worrying about ID’s or what people think about them who cares, the only thing people forced to register should be worrying about is getting off or destroying the registry
Because It doesn’t matter if your A productive member of society or hideing out in the shadows afraid of law enforcement, the registry is still punishment.

Good luck

Last edited 10 months ago by AERO1

Words are not the least restrictive as proven by other cases of similar nature and it is gov’t compelled speech regardless of the words/codes printed on the card for LE/General Public, IMHO.

If you can make DLs/IDs least restrictive with codes for LE knowledge only, then you can go back to registries being LE only viewing (though registries should be stricken completely from being used).

I hope LA loses this if the high court decides to hear it setting precedent across the land, but I really don’t want them to hear it at all because I don’t want other states getting ideas of being permitted to print codes on DLs/IDs like this regardless of the crime the person is convicted of. You might as well tattoo codes on the forearms of people like others in history have had done to them.

A review of the pleadings indicates that one of the attorneys representing the State of Louisiana in this action is an attorney, Tyler Green, who apparently is in private practice. A Google search on Green reveals that he was a former clerk to (get ready for this) Justice Clarence Thomas. I predict that the earth would stop rotating on its axis should Clarence Thomas announce his recusal in this action.

The Federalist Society (i.e., the far-right extremist group that vetted all the judicial nominees for federal judgeships during the Trump presidency) has a page on Atty. Tyler Green. It shines upon him a glowing light. (Should another GOP president ever be elected, there would be a high likelihood that Green would be on the shortlist for a federal judgeship). 

Atty. Green is from UTAH […] I’m confident that Tyler Green has argued cases similar to this one in the past, (otherwise, why have him there?).
Surely, he will present as a formidable opponent.

However, I suspect that the Supremes will deny cert in this case. The Supremes are notorious cowards when it comes to ruling on politically charged issues, and they traditionally look to kick such sensitive issues to Congress if they can (and let them take the heat). But the ever-dissolving spines of congressional politicians are less rigid than the spines of jellyfish and sea slugs, and so here we now sit with this pile of dung that we call SORNA that serves only to destroy our lives. 

If SCOTUS upholds the lower court’s decision, would this force other states to abandon marked driver licenses or IDs and maybe license plates, too?

Hopefully the Supreme’s won’t side with the state AG because that would really suck.

Why the hell was a 12 year old charged and convicted for having sex with a 14 year old anyway? Was the girl convicted too? Doubtful. This man is NOT a sex offender. He was a child at the time and if the girl was willing, where was the harm? It should have been the parents to deal with that, not the courts.

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