Thursday, August 21, 2008

Flag Desecration Case Dismissed

The Twin Falls Times-News is reporting this morning that the flag desecration charges filed against former Minico High School teacher Dan Luker have been dropped. The dismissal came a day before Luker's trial was to begin.

From Cassidy Friedman's article this morning:

Fifth District Magistrate Mick Hodges, sitting in Rupert, dismissed the charge "based upon the constitutional invalidity of the flag defacement statute," Roark wrote in an e-mail to the Times-News. "The First Amendment is alive and well even in Minidoka County, Idaho!"
The last-minute dismissal came after Cannon failed to meet a deadline to respond to Roark's Aug. 1 move to have the case dismissed. Hodges had ordered Cannon to respond by Aug. 15, than set an Aug. 18 deadline.
"They never should have filed this case and once they realized what they had done they should have dismissed the case," Roark said. "They've lost the case after bragging they were going to take it to the U.S. Supreme Court."Cannon can still appeal the dismissal to higher courts.

I have long contended that the charges filed against Luker (and the lack of reprimand for fellow instructor Clint Straatman) depict a community in chaos. To repeat Keith Roark's statement, this is indeed a win for the First Amendment, but don't expect this dismissal to alleviate the tension within the Hispanic community over this and other issues.

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