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JURIST legal news archive...




Supreme Court rules Muslim prisoner may grow beard
January 20, 2015
The US Supreme Court ruled unanimously Tuesday in Holt v. Hobbs that an Arkansas prison policy that bans Muslim prisoners from growing half-inch beards for religious beliefs is unconstitutional. The court held that prohibiting the growth of a religious beard violates the Religious Land Use and Insti....... [more]

Fifth Circuit hears arguments on same-sex marriage bans in Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi
January 10, 2015
The US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit heard oral arguments on Friday regarding the constitutionality of same-sex marriage bans in Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi. Federal courts overturned the same-sex marriage bans in Texas and Mississippi, while another federal court upheld Louisiana's ba....... [more]

Arkansas, Mississippi same-sex marriage bans struck down
November 26, 2014
Two federal judges on Tuesday struck down same-sex marriage bans in Arkansas and Mississippi. The rulings overturned the voter-approved bans that had been in place for over a decade. US District Judge Carlton Wayne Reeves of Jackson placed his decision declaring the ban a violation of the Fourteent....... [more]

Arkansas high court declares voter ID law unconstitutional
October 16, 2014
The Arkansas Supreme Court struck down the state's voter identification law on Wednesday, finding it unconstitutional. Act 592 required "proof of identity in the form of a voter-identification card or a document or identification card showing the voter's name and photo issued by the United States, t....... [more]

Congressional study: voter ID laws lower minority turnout
October 9, 2014
States that have toughened voter identification laws have experienced steeper drops in election turnout than those that have not, including disproportionate falloffs among black and younger voters, according to a nonpartisan congressional study released on Wednesday by the US Government Accountabili....... [more]

Supreme Court hears arguments on religious prison policy, jurisdiction
October 7, 2014
The US Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two cases Tuesday. In Holt v. Hobbs the court is considering whether an Arkansas prison policy that prohibits Muslim prisoners from growing a half-inch beard violates the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA). Current prison polic....... [more]

Arkansas court hears arguments for voter ID case
October 2, 2014
Oral arguments for a case challenging Arkansas' voter ID law began on Thursday, according to the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law. The Brennan Center for Justice filed an amicus brief supporting the challengers. Act 595, passed in 2013 by the Arkansas legislature, re....... [more]

Supreme Court rules for police in fatal car chase
May 27, 2014
The US Supreme Court ruled Tuesday in Plumhoff v. Rickard that police officers who fatally shot a driver to end a dangerous car chase did not violate the Fourth Amendment. The case was brought on appeal by six officers who claimed they were entitled to qualified immunity in a civil lawsuit filed by....... [more]

Arkansas judge expands same-sex marriage ruling
May 16, 2014
A judge for Arkansas' Pulaski County Circuit Court ruled Thursday that the state ban on court clerks issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples is unconstitutional. In doing so, Judge Chris Piazza effectively expanded his May 10 decision wherein he ruled that the state ban on gay marriage was unc....... [more]

Arkansas Supreme Court ruling halts issuing of same-sex marriage licenses
May 15, 2014
The Arkansas Supreme Court issued an unsigned order Thursday declining to put on hold a ruling that overturned the state's constitutional ban on same-sex marriages. The court however, ruled that the the circuit court's order had no effect on Ark. Code Ann. 9-11-208(b) and its prohibition agai....... [more]

Arkansas judge strikes down same-sex marriage ban
May 10, 2014
A judge for Arkansas' Pulaski County Circuit Court ruled Friday that the state's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, striking down both the Arkansas General Assembly Act 144 of 1997 and the 2004 Amendment 83 of the Arkansas State Constitution. Reviewing not only state and federal constitu....... [more]




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