Defendant was convicted of violating a curfew ordinance prohibiting presence on the streets after a certain hour where such presence is unconnected with some legitimate business, trade, profession, or occupation. Held, judgment reversed. The ordinance is invalid as an arbitrary invasion of the inherent personal rights and liberties of all citizens, and unconstitutional under the California Constitution. This case was decided under the so-called “liberty clause” of the California Constitution, which is similar to the Ninth Amendment to the United States Constitution. Many of the cases involving curfew and vagrancy laws, and other laws involving the use of the streets, have arisen under such clauses. Others have arisen under due process of law, privileges and immunities, and equal protection of the laws.
Butler D. Shaffer,
Constitutional Law—Regulating the Use of Streets,
37 Neb. L. Rev. 479
Available at: http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/nlr/vol37/iss2/11