Fazili v. Commonwealth, No. 1379-18-4 (Va. Ct. App. 2019)
Nature of Case: Appellant was convicted of a sex offense and placed on probation with a condition that he was not to have access to the internet without the prior approval of his probation officer. Appellant objected to the condition on First Amendment grounds, and sought review.
Holding: Virginia Court of Appeals remanded for re-sentencing. The Court observed that while probation was an act of grace, the ability of the state to infringe upon the rights of probationers was not unlimited (particularly in the First Amendment context). While the Court did not say that such a general ban would be unconstitutionally on its face, the Court did hold that the trial court would need to articulate the reasons why such a ban would be narrowly tailored if it reimposed that condition on resentencing.
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