Friday, April 7, 2017

Constitutional challenge to nuisance ordinance

The ACLU has filed a lawsuit challenging a nuisance ordinance in Maplewood, Missouri (outside St. Louis). A Maplewood ordinance empowers the city to evict residents and deny them the right to live in the municipality (residents need an occupancy permit) if they create a nuisance, which includes a certain number of police responses, including (expressly) for domestic violence. We looked at a challenge to similar ordinance in Norristown, PA in the Briggs complaint. That ordinance incentivized landlords to evict, thus triggering some DeShaney concerns and state-created-danger workarounds. Here, the city itself is doing the evicting, so the constitutional claim is more straight-forward.