cruel and unusual punishment:
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Essex. April 9, 2015. - August 28, 2015.
Present: Gants, C.J., Spina, Cordy, Botsford, Duffly, Lenk, & Hines, JJ.
Sex Offender. Municipal Corporations, By-laws and ordinances, Home rule. Constitutional Law, Home Rule Amendment.
Civil action commenced in the Superior Court Department on April 12, 2012.
The case was heard by Timothy Q. Feeley, J., on a motion for partial summary judgment, and entry of final judgment was ordered by him.
The Supreme Judicial Court granted an application for direct appellate review.
John A. Kiernan (Robert E. Koosa with him) for the defendant.
John Reinstein (Benjamin H. Keehn, Committee for Public Counsel Services, & Jessie J. Rossman with him) for the plaintiffs.1 A pseudonym.
2 Charles Coe and Paul Poe, also pseudonyms. The named plaintiffs are registered sex offenders suing on behalf of themselves and other persons similarly situated.
Amy M. Belger, Andrew S. Crouch, & Jennifer J. Cox, for Jacob Wetterling Resource Center & others, amici curiae, submitted a brief.
HINES, J. In this appeal, we determine whether an ordinance imposing restrictions on the right of sex offenders to reside in the city of Lynn (city) is prohibited by the Home Rule Amendment, art. 89, § 6, of the Amendments to the Massachusetts Constitution, and the Home Rule Procedures Act, G. L. c. 43B,
§ 13. The plaintiffs, who represent a certified class of sex offenders subject to the ordinance, challenged the constitutionality of the ordinance on various grounds.3 A judge in the Superior Court invalidated the ordinance under the Home Rule Amendment. The city appealed and we granted the plaintiffs' application for direct appellate review. We affirm the Superior Court judgment based on our conclusion that the ordinance is inconsistent with the comprehensive statutory scheme governing the oversight of convicted sex offenders, and
3 The complaint alleged the following claims under the United States and Massachusetts Constitutions: (1) violation of the Home Rule Amendment (Massachusetts Constitution); (2) violation of the clauses prohibiting ex post facto laws; (3) violation of the right to substantive due process; (4) violation of the right to familial association; (5) violation of the right to be protected from cruel and unusual punishment under the Eighth and Fourteenth Amendments to the United States Constitution and cruel or unusual punishment under art. 26 of the Massachusetts Declaration of Rights; and (6) violation of the right to travel.