McCormack v. Hiedeman

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law: Civil Procedure
  • Date Filed: 09-11-2012
  • Case #: 11-36010
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Circuit Judge Pregerson for the Court; Circuit Judge B. Fletcher and Senior District Judge Walter
  • Full Text Opinion

The Court affirms the district court's decision that McCormack will likely succeed on the merits of her case, in which she argues that that Idaho Code § 18-606 violates various provisions of the United States Constitution, but reverses its decision to limit the scope of the preliminary injuction issued to Hiedeman, preventing his enforcement of Idaho Code §§ 18-606 and 18-608(1), to just McCormack. The Court holds that McCormack did have standing to enjoin enforcement of Idaho Code § 18-608(2) in conjunction with § 18-606 but does not having standing to seek pre-enforcement relief against the enforcement of Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act.

After Mark Hiedeman charged Jennie McCormack with Unlawful Abortion, Idaho Code § 18-606, which was dismissed without prejudice, McCormack filed a class action lawsuit against Hiedeman and alleged that the statute violates the Constitution. Hiedeman appealed the issuance of a preliminary injunction which prevented him from enforcing Idaho Code §§ 18-606 and 18-608(1) and McCormack cross appealed. On appeal, the Court affirmed the “determination that McCormack [would] likely succeed with her facial constitutional challenges to Idaho Code §§ 18-606 and 18-608(1)” because the statutes criminalize the conduct of pregnant women and create substantial obstacles to the ability to terminate pre-viability pregnancies. The district court’s findings of fact were not clearly erroneous because there were no counter-affidavits to McCormack’s (that she received her FDA-approved abortion induction medication from a physician). The Court reversed the “scope of the injunction to the extent that it grants relief beyond McCormack” because it found it to be overbroad and unnecessary to apply to anyone except McCormack to preserve the parties’ status quo. On cross-appeal, the Court affirmed “the district court’s conclusion that McCormack lacked standing to seek pre-enforcement relief against the enforcement of [Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act] because she “does not face a genuine threat of prosecution under [the statue] sufficient to confer standing to challenge the statute.” The Court reversed the district court’s decision “that McCormack did not have standing to enjoin enforcement of Idaho Code § 18-608(2) in conjunction with § 18-606” because “McCormack faced prosecution and continues to be threatened with prosecution as a result of her alleged violation of Idaho Code § 18-606, in conjunction with either § 18-608(1) or § 18-608(2),” since the criminal complaint filed did not specify the subsection or which trimester of gestation she reached before the abortion. AFFIRMED in part, REVERSED in part, and REMANDED.

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