US Supreme Ct: High court must follow precedent

Posted at 3:17 PM, Jan 25, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-25 17:37:47-05

BOISE, Idaho (AP) -- The U.S. Supreme Court says the Idaho Supreme Court erred when it didn't follow the precedent set by an earlier Supreme Court ruling.

In a written opinion issued Friday, the nation's highest court reversed the state court's decision on how to award attorney's fees in a civil rights lawsuit.

The issue arose in a lawsuit brought by a woman named Melene James, who sued the city of Boise after she was mistaken for a burglar and bitten by a police dog. A state district court dismissed her lawsuit, and the Idaho Supreme Court upheld that ruling and ordered her to pay the city of Boise's attorney's fees.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruling found that the state court failed to consider whether the lawsuit was frivolous or not when it awarded attorney's fees..