263 N.E.2d 866 (Ill. 1970), 42895, City of Rockford v. Grayned

Docket Nº:42895.
Citation:263 N.E.2d 866, 46 Ill.2d 492
Party Name:The CITY OF ROCKFORD, Appellee, v. Richard GRAYNED, Appellant.
Case Date:September 29, 1970
Court:Supreme Court of Illinois

Page 866

263 N.E.2d 866 (Ill. 1970)

46 Ill.2d 492

The CITY OF ROCKFORD, Appellee,

v.

Richard GRAYNED, Appellant.

No. 42895.

Supreme Court of Illinois.

September 29, 1970.

Rehearing Denied Dec. 3, 1970.

Page 867

[46 Ill.2d 493] Sophia H. Hall, and McCoy, Ming & Black, Chicago, for appellant.

WARD, Justice.

On April 25, 1969, a demonstration was held in front of a high school in the city of Rickford. Richard Grayned, the defendant here, and 40 other demonstrators were arrested. A jury in the circuit court of Winnebago County found the defendant guilty of having violated, in April, 1969, sections 19.2(a) and 18.1(i) of the Code of the City of Rockford and he was fined $25 for each violation. A challenge to the constitutionality of these ordinances has been raised which gives this court jurisdiction on direct appeal.

Section 19.2(a) provides, insofar as is pertinent: 'That no person, while on public or private grounds adjacent to any building in which a school or any class thereof is in session, shall willfully make or assist in the making of any noise or diversion which disturbs or tends to disturb the peace or good order of such school session or class thereof * * *.'

The defendant first argues that this ordinance is unconstitutional on its face because its 'terms are so vague that they fail to give the notice (of what conduct is prohibited) required by the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment, and are so broad as to condemn the exercise of First Amendment freedoms.' He complains [46 Ill.2d 494] relatedly that the ordinance vests unlimited discretion in law enforcement officials to determine the prohibited conduct. We have recently considered and sustained the constitutionally of ordinances and statutes which have been challenged on grounds of being vague and overly broad, including the grounds, which are complained of here, that proscribed conduct was not sufficiently specified and that police were given too broad a discretion in determining whether conduct was proscribed. (See City of Chicago v. Fort, 46 Ill.2d 12, 262 N.E.2d 473; City of Chicago v. Meyer, 44 Ill.2d 1, 253 N.E.2d 400; City of Chicago v. Lawrence, 42 Ill.2d 461, 248 N.E.2d 71; People v. Raby, 40 Ill.2d 392, 240 N.E.2d 595.) Much of what we said there has application here and there is no necessity of repetitious or extended discussion. We do observe that while the defendant charges that terms appearing in the ordinance such as 'noise' and 'diversion' lack constitutional precision and are too indefinite, terms such as 'alarm,' 'disturb,' 'interfere with,' and 'hinder' have been determined by us to comply with the constitutional requirements of specificity. (City of Chicago v. Lawrence, 42 Ill.2d 461, 248 N.E.2d 71; People v. Raby, 40 Ill.2d 392, 240 N.E.2d 595.) The terms here are not constitutionally objectionable.

It cannot be doubted that the State has a legitimate interest in preserving the peace and good order of its school system. (Cf. Brown v. Louisiana, 383 U.S. 131, 143, 86 S.Ct. 719, 15 L.Ed.2d 637, 646; Cox v. Louisiana, 379 U.S. 559, 574, 85 S.Ct. 476, 13 L.Ed.2d 487, 498.) Whiel the ordinance may be susceptible to unconstitutional application, its constitutionality does nor depend on conjectured misapplication. (People v. Raby, 40 Ill.2d 392, 397, 240 N.E.2d 595; Landry v. Daley (N.D.Ill.1968), 280 F.Supp. 938, 960.) Although the

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argument that the ordinance has been unconstitutionally applied is not advanced in this case, our stated position is that we shall deal with extreme circumstances which might cause an unconstitutional application of an ordinance 'if and when they arise.' (City of Chicago v. Fort, 46 Ill.2d 12, 262 N.E.2d 473.) Our conclusion here is that the ordinance [46 Ill.2d 495] in question on its face is 'a valid law dealing with conduct subject to regulation so as to vindicate important interests of society and that the fact that free speech is intermingled with such conduct does not bring with it constitutional protection.' (Cf. Cox v. Louisiana, 379 U.S. 559, 564, 85 S.Ct. 476, 481, 13 L.Ed.2d 487, 492.)

It is next contended that...

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