Right-to-die group wants Minn. charges dismissed

AP News
Posted: Dec 18, 2012 5:42 PM

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Members of a national right-to-die group are challenging a Minnesota assisted-suicide law.

The group Final Exit Network and four of its members were indicted in May in the 2007 suicide of a Minnesota woman. The 17-count indictment alleges the defendants violated state law prohibiting people from assisting, advising or encouraging suicide.

Defense attorneys say the statute is unconstitutional, and criminalizes free speech. They are asking a judge to dismiss the counts related to that assisted-suicide statute.

In court documents filed ahead of a hearing Tuesday, prosecutors said the law is narrowly worded so advocates of suicide may freely speak their minds. They say those who "intentionally" assist, encourage or advise suicide are breaking the law.

Dakota County District Court Judge Karen Asphaug took the arguments under advisement.