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June 02, 2023

The Rutherford Institute is challenging attempts by the government to sidestep accountability and avoid having to make financial restitution for violating the citizenry’s First Amendment right to political expression. The City of Punta Gorda, Fla., was found to have acted unconstitutionally when it fined two protesters a total of $3000 for displaying political messages stating “F@#k Biden,” “F@#k Trump,” and “F@#k Policing 4 Profit” in violation of the city’s sign ordinance.

May 19, 2023

In a unanimous opinion in Polselli v. IRS, the U.S. Supreme Court is allowing the IRS to go on secret, warrantless fishing expeditions through innocent taxpayers’ bank records in order to identify and collect unpaid taxes from family members and associates who have no legal interest in those bank accounts. 

May 03, 2023

The U.S. Supreme Court once yet again refused to hold police accountable for using force on unarmed individuals who have already surrendered or complied with police orders. 

April 27, 2023

Warning against unconstitutional power grabs and overreaches by the IRS, The Rutherford Institute has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to restrict the tax agency’s authority to carry out warrantless searches of innocent taxpayers’ bank accounts and financial records as part of its efforts to identify and pursue the funds of associated family members and friends with delinquent taxes.

April 21, 2023

In a 6-3 decision in Reed v. Goertz, a case that raises concerns of racial bias and systemic injustice in Texas’ death penalty system, the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the need to protect due process rights as it relates to post-conviction DNA testing of crime scene evidence.

April 13, 2023

Pushing back at attempts by the courts to silence individuals whose religious views may be perceived as intolerant or hateful, The Rutherford Institute is challenging a five-year restraining order against a street preacher who has been threatened with arrest after citing Bible verses on social media to express his moral concerns about a church that endorses same-sex marriage and raising awareness about a public drag queen performance that occurred in front of children.

March 30, 2023

The Rutherford Institute is pushing back against efforts to roll back First Amendment protections that could result in discriminatory treatment and double standards by public colleges and universities against religious student groups. Without protections in place, religious student groups at more than 1,200 public colleges and universities could face adverse action by administrators inclined to view the groups’ religious beliefs and statements of faith as violating the schools’ non discrimination policies.

March 23, 2023

The Rutherford Institute is pushing back against a modern-day form of highway robbery which empowers police to seize and keep private property (cash, jewelry, cars, homes and other valuables) they “suspect” may be connected to a crime. Weighing in before the U.S. Supreme Court in Culley v. Marshall, Rutherford Institute attorneys are challenging the government’s use of delaying tactics in asset forfeiture proceedings which make it difficult for individuals innocent of any wrongdoing to timely recover their property—especially cars and cash—seized by police.

March 13, 2023

Government officials used cell phone data and geofence surveillance to track the number of congregants on church grounds during the COVID-19 lockdowns. In denouncing Santa Clara County’s use of geofence surveillance to spy on church attendees, The Rutherford Institute characterized it as an egregious violation of the congregants’ Fourth Amendment rights and an attempt to undermine protected First Amendment activities relating to the freedom of expression and religious freedom.

March 06, 2023

The U.S. Supreme Court has given Texas a free pass on its electronic harassment law, which is so vague and overreaching as to make it illegal for a parent to repeatedly text a teen child about neglected chores. In refusing to hear the case of Barton and Sanders v. Texas, the Supreme Court declined to confront the government’s ongoing attempts to criminalize protected speech.

March 02, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. — In a case that pits the right of conscience against the threat of losing one’s livelihood, the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case about the extent to which the government should have to reasonably accommodate religious employees’ requests for time off each week for religious worship. Specifically, Groff v. DeJoy addresses whether a postal employee should be forced to work on Sundays delivering Amazon packages in lieu of attending church worship services.

February 24, 2023

The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear the appeal of an Ohio man who was arrested, jailed, had his apartment searched, and had his phone and laptop seized by police in retaliation for mocking the police department through a parody Facebook page. 

February 22, 2023

The U.S. Supreme Court has refused to hear a challenge to the federal government’s mass surveillance program. In affirming the dismissal of the Wikimedia v. NSA lawsuit, the Supreme Court has allowed the government to assert a state secrets privilege related to its domestic and international Upstream surveillance program, which gives the NSA access to massive amounts of communications data. 

February 16, 2023

Pointing out that a significant number of police officers across the country fail to understand or recognize the First Amendment rights of citizens, The Rutherford Institute has issued a warning to police not to retaliate against citizens who exercise their constitutional right to peacefully observe and record police officers in the performance of their duties in public.

February 09, 2023

Delaware officials are doubling down on defending their misguided practice of “evict first, ask questions later” that resulted in constables mistakenly evicting a blind man and his family during a snowstorm, leaving the family homeless.

February 06, 2023

Once again, The Rutherford Institute has sounded the alarm over the dangers of equipping police with killer robots. In a letter to the San Francisco Police Commission, Rutherford Institute attorneys have urged the Commissioners to reject a renewed push by police for remotely-controlled, armed robots that can be directed to use deadly force against the citizenry.

February 02, 2023

In the wake of a spate of incidents involving the use of excessive force by police against unarmed individuals, including the brutal killing of Tyre Nichols by members of a Memphis SCORPION police unit, The Rutherford Institute has called on the U.S. Supreme Court to stop police from using excessive force against individuals who have already surrendered or complied with police orders. 

January 25, 2023

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case challenging part of Colorado’s stalking law to determine what constitutes a true threat. The Court’s decision in Counterman v. Colorado could affect whether such a law could be used to criminalize non-threatening political speech that may be merely annoying, embarrassing, or unpleasant. 

January 20, 2023

Pointing out that the First Amendment requires the government to treat all religious beliefs equally, The Rutherford Institute is calling out a Wisconsin jail for leaving a Muslim prisoner no choice but to pray next to the toilet in his cell while jail officers allowed Christian inmates to gather for Bible studies and prayer in a communal area.

December 21, 2022

In a case that pits the right of conscience against the threat of losing one’s livelihood, the U.S. Supreme Court has been asked to protect a postal worker’s right to not have to work on Sundays delivering Amazon packages, which would cause him to miss attending his Sunday church worship. 

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