Arizona State Law Journal Blog

Accelerated Termination Proceedings in Arizona: When the State Takes Away a Child

By George Gould. Background The Arizona Supreme Court has recently decided another case—Trisha A. v. Department of Child Safety—on a controversial law in Arizona juvenile courts. In juvenile court, there exists a mechanism for accelerating severance procedures. When accelerated, a termination hearing is transmuted, by the rules, into a severance hearing. Unfortunately, the language explaining the “good cause” standard appeared to vary across the rules. Arizona Supreme Court Decision The Arizona Supreme Court took this case to decide whether or not there was a conflict in the rules. The Court found that the “good cause” standard is different under different

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Ag-gag: The Intersection of Agriculture, Animal Welfare, and Free Speech

By Avery Topel. In the summer of 2019, an animal advocacy group conducted an undercover investigation of Fair Oaks Farms in Indiana. Secretly recorded video revealed employees beating calves with metal rebar, abusing cattle with hot branding irons, and denying cows veterinary care. After the video went public, the employees were fired and charged with animal cruelty. But in some states, it could be the advocates that filmed who face criminal charges.  Referred to as ag-gag laws, eleven states have passed laws that criminalize undercover investigations of agriculture operations. Some of these laws flatly prohibit filming agriculture operations without permission,

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A Trip Down Mammary Lane: Will Arizona’s Workplaces Have Space for Nursing Mothers?

By Daniel Restrepo. As positive attitudes toward breastfeeding have increased in the last decade, so too have the number of breastfeeding discrimination lawsuits. However, there is uncertainty as to what rights mothers have to pumping in the workplace. Courts are split as to the scope of breastfeeding protections in the Pregnancy Discrimination Act (“PDA”) and Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), and the Ninth Circuit has yet to weigh in on the matter. In Arizona, two cases have taken on this issue: Behan v. Lolo’s Incorporated (D. Ariz. 2019) and Clark v. City of Tucson (D. Ariz. 2018). Given the City

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When Life Gives You Lemons, You Ignore Them: The State of the Lemon Test After American Legion v. American Humanist Society

By Lauren Malm. The Establishment Clause and the Lemon Test The First Amendment provides that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.” Commonly known as the “Establishment Clause,” this clause prohibits government promotion or entanglement with religion and religious organizations. While government can provide religious organizations with general public benefits like fire or police protection, the question becomes: at what point does government action move from general benefits to an unconstitutional establishment of religion? The Supreme Court attempted to distill all Establishment Clause jurisprudence into a single, three-pronged test in Lemon v. Kurtzman. To pass the Lemon

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Attempted Murder is Violent, Murder is Not

By Alexandra Klein.In August of 2019, the Ninth Circuit held in United States v. Begay that second-degree murder was not a “crime of violence.” You read that right. Second-degree murder is categorically not a crime of violence. The Facts In 2013, Randly Begay was arguing in a car with his then girlfriend, Meghan Williams, regarding rumors that she was cheating on him with Roderick Ben. While Ben was in the car, Begay took out his gun and laid it on his leg. Begay continued to argue with Williams and then shot Ben in the head, stating he was not scared

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Unconstitutionally Listed for Life?

By Sierra Brown. Case Study: Phillip B. v. McKay In 2018, Phillip B. worked as a caregiver at New Horizons, a group home for male children. On July 6, 2018, a fifteen-year-old resident of the home called the Arizona Department of Child Safety (“DCS”), alleging that Phillip pressed his elbow against the throat of a thirteen-year-old resident, G.C., until he “made a gasping sound.” During its investigation, DCS interviewed two residents that were present during the incident, including the teen who called DCS. They provided similar accounts, explaining that G.C. was unable to breath when appellant forcibly pressed on his

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The opinions expressed herein are those of the individual contributors to the ASLJ Blog and should not be construed as the opinions of the
Arizona State Law Journal or the Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law at Arizona State University.