Scales of Justice in Courtroom

Legal Docket

For decades, the ACLU Foundation of Northern California has used the courts to protect and expand the rights of all Californians. From fighting against the internment of Japanese Americans, to suing California Highway Patrol for targeting Black and Latinx drivers, the ACLU is building a more just state one lawsuit at a time.

Joshua Wolf v. United States of America

Jul 27, 2006
A federal grand jury issued a subpoena seeking the unpublished portions of a journalist's videotape of a political demonstration. The journalist refused to hand over the material, asserting his First Amendment rights. The ACLU Foundation of Northern California filed amicus briefs arguing that a journalist does have a qualified First Amendment privilege in such circumstances and that a court must b... Read More

Clarence Allen Cases

Jul 13, 2006
ACLU Foundation of Northern California efforts to support clemency for Mr. Clarence Ray Allen, a Native American elder with disabilities who was scheduled to be executed at San Quentin State Prison on January 17, 2006.Even though Mr. Allen suffers from coronary heart disease, is severely diabetic, and is legally blind, the Glenn County Superior Court set his execution date. If the execution is car... Read More

Cheema v. Thompson

Jun 19, 2006
Baptized Sikh students permitted to wear symbolic ceremonial knives to school The ACLU Foundation of Northern California filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging restrictions on an asylum seeker's right to wear a religious head covering. The plaintiff, Harpal Singh Cheema, is a devout Sikh, imprisoned since 1997 while awaiting a decision on his asylum application. The lawsuit charges that ... Read More

Velazquez v. Henderson

Jun 06, 2006
Without any trial or due process, hundreds of West Sacramento residents of a predominantly Latino neighborhood were served a permanent "gang" injunction. In addition to challenging this injunction in a separate case, California v. Broderick Boys, the ACLU Foundation of Northern California is representing one such resident, a 28-year-old father, who was served by the injunction that imposes a life... Read More

ACLU Foundation of Northern California v. Department of Defense

May 25, 2006
This is an action under the Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”), for injunctive and declaratory relief, seeking expedited processing and release of agency records requested by plaintiffs ACLU Foundation of Northern California, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, University of California Santa Cruz Students Against War, and Berkeley Stop the War Coalition from defendants United Stat... Read More

O'Connell v. City of Stockton

May 05, 2006
Is due process violated by a city forfeiture ordinance that authorizes the immediate seizure of vehicles allegedly involved in the solicitation of prostitution or drugs without any provision for a prompt hearing to determining probably cause and the necessity for retaining the vehicle during the pendency of the forfeiture action? Read More

Evans v. City of Berkeley

Mar 09, 2006
After the City terminated the Sea Scouts' free berth space, the Sea Scouts sued the City, claiming that it had violated their First Amendment and equal protection rights. The trial court dismissed the action, and plaintiffs appealed. The First Appellate district affirmed. Evans v. City of Berkeley, 104 Cal. App. 4th 1 (2002). The appellate court (after affirming the dismissal of contract and o... Read More

R.G. v. Koller

Feb 07, 2006
A federal civil rights lawsuit against Hawai'i Youth Correctional Facility (HYCF), the state's juvenile detention facility. The three plaintiffs were abused and harassed because of their sexual orientation and gender identity while at HYCF. Read More

Commission on Peace Officers Standards & Training v. Superior Court for County of Sacramento

Jan 17, 2006
The Los Angeles Times sought release of records from the California Commission on Police Officers Standards and Training regarding the appointment, promotion, and termination histories of various police officers. Trial court granted access to some of the requested information. Court of Appeal reversed it. The Los Angeles Times appealed. The ACLU Foundations of California filed an amicus brief in t... Read More


Jan 17, 2006
On January 17, 2006 the ACLU filed the first lawsuit against the Bush administration in connection with their spying program. "President Bush may believe he can authorize spying on Americans without judicial or Congressional approval, but this program is illegal and we intend to put a stop to it," said ACLU Executive Director Anthony D. Romero. "The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in the Eas... Read More