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Naturists & Florida Law - 2

 

 

 

 

The following are Case Law Summaries involving the Court’s interpretation of

FS 877.03

Wycre v. State of Florida
No. 77440 - Supreme Court of Florida
March 25, 1993

Defendant was convicted in the Circuit Court, Hillborough County, Susan C. Bucklew, J., of loitering for purpose of prostitution and battery of law enforcement officer. The District Court of Appeal, 573 So.2d 953, affirmed in part and reversed in part and certified question. The Supreme Court, Barkett, C.J., held that city ordinance making it unlawful to loiter in manner and under circumstances manifesting purpose of engaging in acts of prostitution was unconstitutional.

1. Constitutional Law
    Federal and State constitutional provisions protecting rights of persons to express themselves protect not only speech and written word, but also conduct intended to communicate.
2. Constitutional Law
    First Amendment and Florida Constitution protect rights of persons to associate with whom they please and to assemble with others for political or for social purposes.
3. Constitutional Law
    When lawmakers attempt to restrict or burden fundamental and basic constitutional rights, laws must not only be directed toward legitimate public purpose, but they must be drawn as narrowly as possible.
4. Constitutional Law
    Statutes cannot be so broad that they prohibit constitutionally protected conduct as well as unprotected conduct.
5. Constitutional Law
    When legislation is drafted so that it may be applied to conduct that is protected by First Amendment, it is unconstitutionally overbroad.
6. Constitutional Law
    Overbreadth doctrine permits person whose own speech or conduct may be prohibited to challenge enactment facially because it also threatens others not before the court - those who desire to engage in legally protected expression but who may refrain from doing so rather than risk prosecution or undertake to have the law declared partially invalid, and doctrine contemplates pragmatic judicial assumption that overbroad statute will have chilling effect on protected expression.
7. Constitutional Law
    Courts may not go so far in narrowing construction of statute to render it constitutional so as to effectively rewrite legislative enactments.

"We find the ordinance unconstitutional because it unnecessarily infringes on constitutional rights; it is too vague because a violation of the law is determined based on law enforcement officers' discretion; it violates substantive due process by punishing innocent activities; and it impermissibly provides a greater penalty than that imposed by state statutes for similar criminal conduct".

[1,2] The First Amendment of the United States Constitution and article 1, section 4 of the Florida Constitution protect the rights of individual to express themselves in a variety of ways. The constitutions protect not only speech and the written word, but also conduct intended to communicate. Further, the First Amendment and article 1, section 5 of the Florida constitution protect the rights of individuals to associate with whom they please and to assemble with others for political or for social purposes.

[3,4] When lawmakers attempt to restrict or burden fundamental and basic rights such as these, the laws must not only be directed toward a legitimate public purpose, but they must be drawn as narrowly as possible. Put another way, statutes cannot be so broad that they prohibit constitutionally protected conduct as well as unprotected conduct.

[5,6] When legislation is drafted so that it may be applied to conduct that is protected by the First Amendment, it is said to be unconstitutionally overbroad. This overbreadth doctrine permits an individual whose own speech or conduct may be prohibited to challenge an enactment facially "because it also threatens others not before the court - those who desire to engage in legally protected expression but who may refrain from doing so rather than risk prosecution or undertake to have the law declared partially invalid".

 

 

 


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