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Professor Shaakirrah Sanders Available to Discuss Constitutional Rights in Idaho Case

January 20, 2016

On Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2016, in the United States District Court for the District of Idaho, Meridian Cinemas filed a lawsuit accusing members of the Idaho State Police of violating their constitutionally protected right to freedom of speech. The police had threatened to revoke the theater’s liquor license because they showed the R-rated movie “Fifty Shades of Grey,” which, according to the police, violated section 23-614(2) of the Idaho Code. The code prohibits serving alcohol during movies that depict “(a)cts or simulated acts of sexual intercourse” or “(a)ny persons being touched, caressed, (or) fondled on the breast or buttocks” on licensed premises. However, the Ninth Circuit, which reviews federal cases from Idaho has “clearly established that liquor regulations (cannot) be used to impose restrictions on speech that would otherwise be prohibited under the First Amendment.” LSO, Ltd. v. Stroh, 205 F.3d 1146, 1159 (9th Cir. 2000). Thus, Meridian Cinemas has asked the federal court in Boise to enjoin the Idaho State Police from enforcing section 23-614(2).

Associate Professor of Law Shaakirrah R. Sanders is available to discuss Meridian Cinemas' lawsuit against members of the Idaho State Police.

Sanders studies individual rights and liberties under the U.S. Constitution and teaches courses in constitutional law, criminal procedure, and freedom of speech and press. She has appeared on national, regional and local broadcast news media outlets, including The New York Times, The Associated Press, Northwest Public Radio, Boise State Public Radio, and Boise’s KTVB News 7, KITV News 9, and KBOI News 2.

To arrange an interview with Shaakirrah R. Sanders, contact her directly at the University of Idaho College of Law in Boise at 111-364-4070 or [email protected].

Cindy Hollenbeck
Communications and Marketing, College of Law
[email protected]

Gemma Gaudette
Regional Director, Media Relations & Communication, Boise
[email protected]

Shaakirrah Sanders

About the University of Idaho

The University of Idaho, home of the Vandals, is Idaho’s land-grant, national research university. From its residential campus in Moscow, U of I serves the state of Idaho through educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls, nine research and Extension centers, plus Extension offices in 42 counties. Home to nearly 12,000 students statewide, U of I is a leader in student-centered learning and excels at interdisciplinary research, service to businesses and communities, and in advancing diversity, citizenship and global outreach. U of I competes in the Big Sky Conference. Learn more at