Denver will resume enforcing its camping ban, city attorney says

Posted at 6:15 PM, Jan 13, 2020

DENVER — The City of Denver will resume enforcement of its camping ban just two weeks after a judge ruled it unconstitutional, a spokesman for the city attorneys’ office said Monday.

While a date has not been set, our partners at The Denver Post report it’s likely to happen by the end of the week.

The city filed a notice of appeal on Dec. 30 challenging the ruling by County Judge Johnny C. Barajas, who determined the ban constitutes cruel and unusual punishment against the homeless.

READ MORE: 360: Denver residents conflicted about urban camping ban and recent court ruling on constitutionality

The ruling, however, did not overturn or prohibit enforcement of the ban. In order for that to happen, a higher court must make a ruling, or the Denver City Council has to vote to repeal the law already in the books.

Barajas’s decision ruling the ban unconstitutional came in a case involving Jerry Burton, a homeless advocate who had been cited for violating the city’s ban.

He cited a 2018 decision by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that struck down a ban on camping in public places in Boise, Idaho. The U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal of that case.

Denver voters rejected a ballot measure in May that would have overturned the camping ban.