Bioethics Blogs

Minnesota v. Final Exit Network – Oral Arguments

Oral arguments in the next round of Minnesota v. Final Exit Network are
scheduled for September 28, 2016 at 9:30 AM before the Minnesota Court of Appeals (No. A15-1826).

The appeal focuses on First Amendment issues.  In May 2015, a jury found Final Exit Network, Inc. guilty of “assisting” in a “suicide” and interfering with the scene of a death so as to “mislead” the coroner.   In August, FEN was sentenced to a $33,000 fine.  

The underlying conduct primarily consisted of FEN volunteers providing information, education, and emotional support to Doreen Dunn, 57, of Apple Valley, in her self-deliverance on May 30, 2007.  In other words, FEN was convicted for exercising its First Amendment-protected right to freedom of speech.  

In addition to the parties, amicus briefs have been submitted by (1) First Amendment Lawyers Association; (2) Freedom From Religion Foundation; (3) Atheists for Human Rights; and (4) the Death with Dignity National Center.

The views, opinions and positions expressed by these authors and blogs are theirs and do not necessarily represent that of the Bioethics Research Library and Kennedy Institute of Ethics or Georgetown University.