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Maine Supreme Court rules national stalking decision does not impact state case

The Maine Supreme Court ruled last week that a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on a Colorado case last year does not impact Maine's stalking law.

Jacob Labbe appealed his stalking conviction to Maine's Supreme Judicial Court, arguing that Maine's stalking statute is unconstitutional, and that the court must apply the U.S. Supreme Court decision to his case.

The Colorado decision focused on a First Amendment challenge, finding that state courts used the wrong test in determining the true threat of the speech used by an accused stalker.

Labbe's lawyer argued that the state's argument at trial also focused on the content of his speech. But the Maine Supreme Court disagreed, saying his case focused on his repeated actions to contact the victim.

The court also disagrees with Labbe's argument that Maine's stalking law is unconstitutional.

Kaitlyn Budion is Maine Public’s Bangor correspondent, joining the reporting team after several years working in print journalism.