CA Supreme Court to Hear First Amendment Challenge to California’s Law Protecting Winesses from Threats of Retaliation

The Metropolitan News-Enterprise reports:

The California Supreme Court unanimously agreed yesterday to hear a First Amendment overbreadth challenge to a statute making it a crime to threaten retaliation against a witness.

The justices, at their weekly conference in San Francisco, granted review in People v. Lowery (2009) 180 Cal.App.4th 630, a Dec. 21 decision of the Fourth District Court of Appeal, Div. Two.

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On appeal, Lowery argued that Sec. 140(a) violates the First Amendment because it allows a defendant to be convicted even if he does not intend his statement to be taken as a threat and/or lacks the apparent ability to carry out the threat.

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