Thursday, October 02, 2014

Court Rejects 1st Amendment Objections To Required AA Attendance

In State v. Miller, (OH App., Sept. 30, 2014), an Ohio appellate court rejected free exercise and establishment clause claims raised by Johnny Miller, a convicted robber, who as a condition of his community control sentence was required to attend Alcoholics Anonymous. The claim comes in the context of Miller's appeal of his conviction for forging his AA attendance documents. In rejecting the claim, the court noted that Miller only raised the religious claims belatedly.  The court added that, more importantly:
the record is devoid of any evidence showing that appellant ever attended an AA meeting whose primary purpose was to advance religious beliefs rather than to promote sobriety and recovery from addiction and substance abuse.