Latest American Civil Liberties Union News

S. Carolina civil right lawyer, 1st Amendment champion dies

Dec. 6, 2019 4:45 PM EST

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A South Carolina civil rights lawyer who helped redefine free speech rights for attorneys has died. Edna Smith Primus died Nov. 29 at age 75, The State newspaper reported. One of the first black women to practice law in South Carolina, Primus worked with the American Civil Liberties...

ACLU sues St. Paul, saying police refused to provide data

Dec. 4, 2019 8:48 PM EST

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union sued the city of St. Paul on Wednesday, saying the police department has improperly withheld public data about its policing activities in the community. The lawsuit says that although Mayor Melvin Carter and police Chief...

Vermont city settles with ACLU client over homeless policy

Dec. 4, 2019 2:51 PM EST

BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — The Vermont chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union and the city of Burlington have settled a federal lawsuit over the city’s policy of confiscating and destroying the property of homeless residents, the two sides said Wednesday. In the settlement on behalf of ACLU...

California city sued for alleged housing discrimination

Dec. 2, 2019 8:27 PM EST

HESPERIA, Calif. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Justice is suing the California city of Hesperia, alleging it discriminated against black and Latino renters. The lawsuit announced Monday takes aim at a city ordinance that required landlords to evict tenants who had allegedly committed crimes on or near...

Man who says he was banned from Kansas may return after deal

Dec. 2, 2019 5:16 PM EST

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — A man who claims he was banished from Kansas as a condition of a plea deal could be allowed back in the state under an agreement reached Monday, although a county prosecutor disputes that he was ever banned from returning. The American Civil Liberties Union of Kansas said in a news...

Request denied to block New Hampshire’s voter residency law

Nov. 28, 2019 11:37 AM EST

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — A federal judge in New Hampshire denied a request Wednesday that would have blocked a new state law requiring voters to be full-fledged residents from being enforced for the first-in-the-nation presidential primary in February. The American Civil Liberties Union of New Hampshire sued...

Panel considers ways to improve indigent legal services

Nov. 24, 2019 11:12 AM EST

AUGUSTA, Maine (AP) — A former Maine chief justice said something has to happen to ensure adequate funding and representation for poor people tried for crimes in Maine. More resources are needed regardless whether the state sticks with the current system or creates a public defender office, Daniel Wathen...

Tamir Rice’s mom, ACLU make kids guide for police encounters

Nov. 23, 2019 2:44 PM EST

CLEVELAND (AP) — The mother of a black 12-year-old fatally shot by a white Cleveland police officer has released a booklet to show children how they should interact with police. Cleveland.com reports Samaria Rice and the American Civil Liberties Union have created the Tamir Rice Safety Handbook. The...

Latino war veteran files $1M claim for immigration arrest

Nov. 20, 2019 2:02 PM EST

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Lawyers for a Latino American war veteran who was wrongfully detained by immigration agents in Michigan have filed a $1 million claim against the U.S. government for his three days in custody. Jilmar Ramos-Gomez is a Michigan-born U.S. citizen. Yet he was taken into custody after...

Ohio county reworks panhandling law to settle lawsuit

Nov. 19, 2019 2:43 PM EST

AKRON, Ohio (AP) — An county council in Ohio on Monday revamped its law restricting panhandling to settle a lawsuit that said the previous ordinance restricted free speech rights by criminalizing the act of giving or receiving donations. The Akron Beacon Journal reported the Summit County Council voted to...