Federal lawsuit seeks to overturn Arkansas panhandling law
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) -- The American Civil Liberties Union is asking a federal judge to halt a new Arkansas anti-loitering law that it says unconstitutionally targets panhandlers and that the restrictions pose the same problems as a ban on begging that was struck down last year.
The ACLU of Arkansas sued the state on Monday over the new law, which expands the definition of loitering to include someone asking for anything as charity or a gift in a harassing or threatening manner in a way that's likely to cause alarm to the other person or creates a traffic hazard. The new law was approved in April and took effect last week.
A federal judge last year struck down a section of the state's loitering law that prohibited begging for money, food or other charity.