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Supreme Court of the United States
March 18, 1980, Argued ; June 9, 1980, Decided
[*76] [***749] [**2038] MR. JUSTICE REHNQUIST delivered the opinion of the Court.
We postponed jurisdiction of this appeal from the Supreme Court of California to decide the important federal constitutional questions it presented. Those are whether state constitutional [****7] provisions, which permit individuals to exercise free speech and petition rights on the property of a privately owned shopping center to which the public is invited, violate the shopping center owner's property rights under the Fifth [*77] and Fourteenth Amendments or his free speech rights under the First and Fourteenth Amendments.
Appellant PruneYard is a privately owned shopping center in the city of Campbell, Cal. It covers approximately 21 acres -- 5 devoted to parking and 16 occupied by walkways, plazas, sidewalks, and buildings that contain more than 65 specialty shops, 10 restaurants, and a movie theater. The PruneYard is open to the public for the purpose of encouraging the patronizing of its commercial establishments. It has a policy not to permit any visitor or tenant to engage in any publicly expressive activity, including the circulation of petitions, that is not directly related to its commercial purposes. This policy has been strictly enforced in a nondiscriminatory fashion. The PruneYard is owned by appellant Fred Sahadi.
Appellees are high school students who sought to solicit support for their opposition to a United Nations resolution against "Zionism. [****8] " On a Saturday afternoon they set up a card table in a corner of PruneYard's central courtyard. They distributed pamphlets and asked passersby to sign petitions, which were to be sent to the President and Members of Congress. Their activity was peaceful and orderly and so far as the record indicates was not objected to by PruneYard's patrons.
Soon after appellees had begun soliciting signatures, a security guard informed them that they would have to leave because their [**2039] activity violated PruneYard regulations. The guard suggested that they move to the public sidewalk at the PruneYard's perimeter. Appellees immediately left the premises and later filed this lawsuit in the California Superior Court of Santa Clara County. They sought to enjoin appellants from denying them access to the PruneYard for the purpose of circulating their petitions.
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447 U.S. 74 *; 100 S. Ct. 2035 **; 64 L. Ed. 2d 741 ***; 1980 U.S. LEXIS 129 ****; 6 Media L. Rep. 1311
PRUNEYARD SHOPPING CENTER ET AL. v. ROBINS ET AL.
Prior History: [****1] APPEAL FROM THE SUPREME COURT OF CALIFORNIA.
Disposition: 23 Cal. 3d 899, 592 P. 2d 341, affirmed.
shopping center, rights, property right, message, appellants', private property, solicit, infringed, shopping center owner, state law, establishments, handbills, petitions, trespass, views, join, expressive activity, circumstances, restrictions, newspaper, premises, constitutional provision, property owner, common law, common-law, distribute, signatures, shopping, privately owned shopping center, open to the public
Civil Procedure, Jurisdiction on Certiorari, Considerations Governing Review, State Court Decisions, Governments, Legislation, Interpretation, Constitutional Law, Fundamental Freedoms, Freedom of Speech, Scope, Political Speech, Bill of Rights, Fundamental Rights, Eminent Domain & Takings, Police Powers, Real Property Law, Lease Agreements, Commercial Leases, Shopping Center Leases, Inverse Condemnation, Regulatory Takings, Torts, General Premises Liability, Types of Premises, Stores, Environmental Law, Land Use & Zoning, Eminent Domain Proceedings, Procedural Due Process, Scope of Protection, Energy & Utilities Law, Pipelines & Transportation, Appeals, Reviewability of Lower Court Decisions, Preservation for Review