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Smith v. Daily Mail Publishing Co.

Significance, Juvenile Protection And State Regulation Of The Press, Impact, Further Readings


Smith, Prosecuting Attorney and Circuit Judges of Kanawha County, West Virginia


Daily Mail Publishing Co., et al.

Petitioner's Claim

That two newspapers violated West Virginia state law by publishing, without prior approval of juvenile court, the name of a juvenile charged with a crime.

Chief Lawyer for Petitioner

Cletus B. Hanley

Chief Lawyer for Respondent

Floyd Abrams

Justices for the Court

Harry A. Blackmun, William J. Brennan, Jr., Warren E. Burger (writing for the Court), Thurgood Marshall, William H. Rehnquist, John Paul Stevens, Potter Stewart, Byron R. White

Justices Dissenting

None (Lewis F. Powell, Jr., did not participate)


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

26 June 1979


Affirmed West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals finding that a West Virginia law prohibiting publication of a lawfully obtained identification of a juvenile offender violated the First and Fourth Amendments.

Related Cases

  • Oklahoma Publishing Co. v. District Court, 430 U.S. 308 (1977).
  • Landmark Communications, Inc. v. Virginia, 345 U.S. 829 (1978).
  • Globe Newspaper Co. v. Superior Court for the County of Norfolk, 457 U.S. 596 (1982).
  • Florida Star v. B. J. F., 491 U.S. 524 (1989).

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1973 to 1980