Saturday, January 17, 2009

Ninth Circuit Strikes Down Scarlet Letter Law

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit came down against the scarlet letter yesterday its opinion in the case of Humphries v. County of Los Angeles:

California's maintenance of Child Abuse Central Index, a database of known or suspected child abusers, violates procedural due process under Fourteenth Amendment because stigma of being listed, "plus" various statutory consequences, constitutes a liberty interest; index lacks meaningful, guaranteed procedural safeguards before initial placement of names on it; and index does not afford identified individuals a fair opportunity to challenge allegations against them.

(emphases mine) Seems like another win for the precept of "innocent until proven guilty".

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