The city of Apple Valley has agreed to settle a class action federal lawsuit filed in 2020 that challenges the constitutionality of a 2017 city ordinance that limits where some sex offenders can live in the community.The Apple Valley City Council, without discussion, approved a settlement agreement as part of the consent agenda during its March 25 meeting.
According to the agreement, one payment of $70,000 will be made to “resolve all claims for damages, fees and costs.” Of that total, two plaintiffs will reach receive $15,000 while the remaining $40,000 will go to their attorneys. In the agreement, none of the parties admit any liability or validity of the claims or defenses asserted.
The lawsuit alleged that the restrictions imposed by the ordinance “are so severe that they effectively ban individuals subject to the ordinance’s restrictions from residing anywhere in Apple Valley,” according to court documents.
The attorneys representing the offenders argued the ordinance violates the Constitution’s ex post facto clause, the lawsuit said. According to Cornell Law School, the clause prohibits governments from passing laws that “retroactively criminalize behavior.”